SUERC Radiocarbon Facility is transforming dating techniques

The Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre’s Radiocarbon Facility in East Kilbride is a central facility for the UK’s Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), facilitating dating support in the environmental sciences. It provides UK scientists and international collaborators with radiocarbon measurements.

The centre has an excellent track record of technical innovation and drives new developments in the carbon isotope dating techniques for heritage science.  Speaking to Irish News, professor Stewart Freeman and a senior scientist in advanced mass spectroscopy at SUERC said that the laboratory activity has a leading role in method development. For professor Freeman, “It is not an exaggeration to say the global carbon dating community has its eyes on East Kilbride to see how this advances our field.”

The NERC Radio Carbon Facility (NRCF) has an “open-door” policy for all existing and potential users of its facilities at all stages of their research projects. The facility is strongly encouraging collaboration and currently invites applications to the NRCF Steering Committee. Submissions should by sent directly to the facility by 5th October 2018

Courtesy of SUERC


The Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre is one of thirteen E-RIHS UK partners. SUERC was established to provide to the universities of the Scottish consortium collaborative access to state-of-the-art research equipment and expertise. The main areas of strength are in geochemistry, radiochemistry and isotope biogeosciences and the Centre houses perhaps the most comprehensive suite of dating techniques available in the UK.

Apart from NERC Radiocarbon Facility (East Kilbride), SUERC operates another Radiocarbon Laboratory. It is involved in archaeological, forensic and environmental research, additionally using stable isotopes (13C and 15N) for dietary reconstruction. As well as undertaking its own in-house and collaborative research, the SUERC Radiocarbon Laboratory also provides a radiocarbon dating service to national and international museums, universities and archaeology units. Other key facilities include Argon Isotope Facility, Isotope Community Support Facility and Cosmogenic Isotope Analysis Facility.

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