Beta Analytic Supports Young French Geomorphologists 2011 Annual Meeting

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

ISO/IEC 17025:2005 accredited radiocarbon dating lab Beta Analytic, Inc., was one of the sponsors of the 2011 Journées des Jeunes Géomorphologues (The Young French Geomorphologists Annual Meeting) held at the University of Avignon in France from February 3 to February 5, 2011. Beta Analytic research associate Solene de Brebisson joined the event.

The event was organized by CEREGE (Centre Européen de Recherche et d’Enseignement des géosciences de l’Environnement, UMR 6635, CNRS, Aix-en-Provence), UMR 6012 CNRS ESPACE (Étude des Structures, des Processus d’Adaptation et des Changements de l’Espace), and the University of Avignon and Pays de Vaucluse. The annual meeting was attended by graduate students, scientists, and researchers. Most of the participants were from schools in France. There were also geomorphologists from Italy, Brazil, Switzerland, India, Austria, Argentina, and Germany, who presented their researches at the annual meeting.

The 2012 Young French Geomorphologists Annual Meeting will be held in Strasbourg, France.

Geomorphology: The Study of Landforms

Geomorphologists study how Earth-surface processes form and change landscapes. By studying sediments from landforms and the organic materials preserved in them, geomorphologists are able to figure out the history of landscapes, how they were formed, their changes over time, and the effect of geological hazards on them. Common geomorphoology specializations include aeolian (desert) geomorphology, glacial and periglacial geomorphology, and volcanic and tectonic geomorphology.

Radiocarbon Dating Sediments

Radiocarbon analysis of sediment samples often begin with physical pretreatment to check if there are macrofossils that can be extracted. These macrofossils include charcoal, wood, plant, bone, shell, and seeds. Generally, it is better to date the macrofossils than the sediment. Removing contaminants in sediment samples can be difficult. Macrofossils, on the other hand, can be treated with acid to remove carbonates and alkali to remove humic acids that could be present in the sediment.

Beta Analytic provides radiometric and AMS dating services to geomorphologists around the world. For radiometric dating, the lab requires a maximum of 200 grams of sediment. For AMS dating, 2-10 grams of sediment suffice. Samples can be sent directly to the headquarters in Miami or to its forwarding facilities in the UK, Japan, China, India, Brazil, and Australia.

Young French Geomorphologists 2011 Annual Meeting Participants
Image Courtesy of Dr. Matthieu Ghilardi


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