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IRFT datation

Since the 1988 C-14 datation of the "shroud of Turin" which concludes to a middle-age origin, some people have claimed that the samples used where in fact a compound of two kind of interweaved fibers : linen from the original shroud, and cotton from a repair done in the 16th century. These last days (on Easter occasion), newspapers were reporting that one professor Giulio Fanti from University of Padua, using a spectrometric datation method found that this shroud could date from the 1st century.

Googling for some explanations about the technic, I have found this link :,
which in short says that the caracteristic peaks of wood material shift with time, and then allow an evaluation of its age.

Does anybody know more ? and especially if this method has before been applied to ancien clothe material ? Of course, religious or anti-religious motivations are at stake in this matter, but whatever there can be only one answer for the age of this tissue. Is the IRFT datation reliable ?
This will be the Guilio Fanti who has just co-authored a book on the subject - his co-author being Saverio Gaeta who is......a Vatican spokesman. Oh deary me.

Still, I went to the literature to see what Fanti has published on the shroud and his dating - after all the press releases and apparently scientific hubbub. What did I find? Sod all. Nothing. Nada.

Now, I don't know Fanti and have no axe to grind with him at all, but when scientists publish books before peer-reviewed papers then I tend to dismiss what they have to say as anything other than speculation and opinion at best, and potentially driven by commercial self-interest.

It seems to me that the 1988 dating was imperfect and didn't properly account for contamination. That much seems clear. The problem, however, is that this has then been distorted (in a manner familiar to, and sadly reminiscent of, creationists and other fundamentalists), to allow a date 13 centuries earlier without explaining just how much contamination and of what type that would require. An inaccurate dating is one thing. A dating inaccurate to that degree is quite another. This reminds me of Answers In Genesis 'expose' of radiometric dating when they managed to get a sample dating that was about 50 to 100 million years out (mainly because they lied on the sample submission form). What they didn't say was that this put it around 2.6 billion years old rather than 2.7 billion.....

I'll wait for the peer-reviewed publication from Fanti before judging......
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