Skip to main content Accessibility help

Measuring 14C Concentration in Wine to Monitor Global Distribution of 14C

  • Hirohisa Sakurai (a1), Saori Namai (a2), Emiko Inui (a3), Fuyuki Tokanai (a1), Kazuhiro Kato (a4), Yui Takahashi (a2), Taichi Sato (a2), Satoshi Kikuchi (a5), Yumi Arai (a1), Kimiaki Masuda (a6), Katsumasa Shibata (a2) and Yasunao Kuriyama (a7)...


Using liquid scintillation counting (LSC) and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS), radiocarbon concentrations were measured for wine from 8 wineries located in 7 countries in the Northern and Southern hemispheres. The 14C concentrations of ethanol and residual materials in the wine were correlated (correlation coefficient 0.82). The δ14C measurements of wine samples from the mid-latitudes in the Northern Hemisphere were approximately 1l% lower than the extrapolations from Schauinsland data, suggesting a local fossil fuel effect. δ14C measurements from the wine samples from the Southern Hemisphere were higher than those from the Northern Hemisphere. The offsets of the 4 wine δ14C measurements were significant, with values between approximately 8% and 15%. Because the harvest years of the mixed grapes were estimated to be 7–12 yr older than their vintage years, this leads to a caveat when determining the 14C concentrations of the year using the wine vintage.


Corresponding author

2 Corresponding author. Email:


Hide All
Beer, J, McCracken, K, von Steiger, R. 2012. Cosmogenic Radionuclides. Berlin: Springer.
Burchuladze, AA, Pagava, SV, Povinec, P, Togonidze, GI, Usacev, S. 1980. Radiocarbon variations with the 11-year solar cycle during the last century. Nature 287(5780):320–2.
Burchuladze, AA, Chudy, M, Eristavi, IV, Pagava, SV, Povinec, P, Sivo, A, Togonidze, GI. 1989. Anthropogenic 14C variations in atmospheric CO2 and wines. Radiocarbon 31(3):771–6.
Ehleringer, JR, Casale, JF, Barnette, JE, Xu, X, Lott, MJ. 2011. 14C calibration curves for modern plant material from tropical regions of South America. Radiocarbon 53(4):585–94.
Hua, Q, Barbetti, M. 2004. Review of tropospheric bomb 14C data for carbon cycle modeling and age calibration purposes. Radiocarbon 46(3):1273–98.
Levin, I, Kromer, B. 2004. The tropospheric 14CO2 level in mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere (1959–2003). Radiocarbon 46(3):1261–72.
Nydal, R. 1968. Further investigation on the transfer of radiocarbon in nature. Journal of Geophysical Research 73(12):3617–35.
Nydal, R, Lovseth, K. 1983. Tracing bomb 14C in the atmosphere 1962–1980. Journal of Geophysical Research 88:3621–42.
Palstra, SWL, Karstens, U, Streurman, HJ, Meijer, HAJ. 2008. Wine ethanol 14C as a tracer for fossil fuel CO2 emissions in Europe: measurements and model comparison. Journal of Geophysical Research 113: D21305, doi:10.1029/2008JD010282.
Rakowski, AZ, Nakamura, T, Pazdur, A. 2008. Variations of anthropogenic CO2 in urban area deduced by radiocarbon concentration in modern tree rings. Journal of Environmental Radioactivity 99(10):1558–65.
Sakurai, H, Tokanai, F, Kato, K, Takahashi, Y, Sato, T, Masuda, K, Miyahara, H, Mundia, C, Tavera, W. 2013. Latest 14C concentrations of plant leaves at high altitudes in the Northern and Southern hemispheres: vertical stability of local suess effect. Radiocarbon, these proceedings, doi:10.2458/azu_is_rc.55.16273.
Schönhofer, F. 1992. 14C in Austrian wine and vinegar. Radiocarbon 34(3):768–71.
Takahashi, Y, Sakurai, H, Inui, E, Namai, S, Sato, T. 2011. Radiocarbon measurement of biodiesel fuel using the liquid scintillation counter Quantulus. In: Cassette, P, editor. LSC 2010, Advances in Liquid Scintillation Spectrometry. Tucson: Radiocarbon. p 41–6.
Tokanai, F, Kato, K, Anshita, M, Izumi, A, Sakurai, H, Saito, T. Compact AMS system at Yamagata University. AIP Conference Proceedings 1336:70–4.


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed