The Arizona group split each sample into four subsamples.

One pair of subsamples from each textile was treated with dilute HCL, dilute Na OH and again in acid, with rinsing in between (method a).

Even for the first investigation, there was a possibility of using radiocarbon dating to determine the age of the linen from which the shroud was woven.

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All laboratories examined the textile samples microscopically to identify and remove any foreign material.

The Oxford group cleaned the samples using a vacuum pipette, followed by cleaning in petroleum ether (40° C for 1 h) to remove lipids and candlewax, for example.

It was first displayed at Lirey in France in the 1350s and subsequently passed into the hands of the Dukes of Savoy.

After many journeys the shroud was finally brought to Turin in 1578 where, in 1694, it was placed in the royal chapel of Turin Cathedral in a specially designed shrine.

The second pair of subsamples was treated with a commercial detergent (1.5% SDS), distilled water, 0.1% HCL and another detergent (1.5% triton X-100); they were then submitted to a Soxhlet extraction with ethanol for 60 min and washed with distilled water at 70° C in an ultrasonic bath (method b).

The Oxford group divided the precleaned sample into three.

To confirm the feasibility of dating the shroud by these methods an intercomparison, involving four AMS and two small gas-counter radiocarbon laboratories and the dating of three known-age textile samples, was coordinated by the British Museum in 1983. The strip came from a single site on the main body of the shroud away from any patches or charred areas.

The results of this intercomparison are reported and discussed by Burleigh . Three samples, each ~50 mg in weight, were prepared from this strip.

One-third received no further treatment, one-third was submitted to a weak treatment with 0.5% HCL (room temperature), 0.25% Na OH (room temperature) and again in acid, with rinsing in between.