We use infrared, radiocarbon, and stable isotope analyses to investigate the purity of cellulose extracted from wood using a rapid processing technique. Replicate laboratory standards processed using the standard Brendel method are not significantly different with respect to delta O-18 from those prepared using traditional techniques, although the process does result in a slight acetylation of the wood samples. Radiocarbon comparisons, however, show significant differences. We conclude that the standard Brendel method is appropriate for developing stable isotope time series for high-resolution isotope dendroclimatology but must be used with caution for precision radiocarbon measurements.
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