Unheated rock surfaces
Luminescence dating is a technique used to date Quaternary sediments and for determining when ancient materials such as pottery, ceramics, bricks or tiles were last heated. The technique can be applied to material from about to several hundred thousand years old. It is primarily a research facility for the School and for collaborators in New Zealand. One room serves as preparation laboratory, where all incoming samples are unpacked and chemically treated to purify the sample and extract the desired minerals in the right grain size.
Keywords: luminescence dating, ceramics, sediments, archaeological method surface ceramics by TL (Dunnell and Feathers , Sampson et al ).
Rachel K. Smedley and Ann G. Luminescence dating is a geochronological tool used to determine the timing of sediment burial, pottery firing, mountain evolution, mineral formation and the exertion of pressure. The luminescence dating technique covers a large age range from modern-day to millions of years. The technique is inherently holistic, drawing upon understanding from disciplines such as physics quantum mechanics , mineralogy grain structure and composition , geochemistry natural radioactivity , archaeology and Earth sciences.
This issue brings together contributions on new and innovative luminescence dating methods and the latest findings related to Earth-surface processes and human existence. Grady Open University, UK. Since its proposal in , luminescence dating has developed into a versatile geochronological technique that can be applied to material up to 2 million years old. The technique can be applied to grain sizes from silt to boulder, and to sediments that occur in a wide range of settings, e.
This issue discusses the latest technical developments of luminescence dating and the key scientific discoveries that it has facilitated over the last few decades.
Testing Luminescence Dating Methods for Small Samples from Very Young Fluvial Deposits
This paper aims to provide an overview concerning the optically stimulated luminescence OSL dating method and its applications for geomorphological research in France. An outline of the general physical principles of luminescence dating is given. A case study of fluvial sands from the lower terrace of the Moselle valley is then presented to describe the range of field and laboratory procedures required for successful luminescence dating.
Recently, surface luminescence dating on several types of rocks, limestones, granites, sand- stones, has been well documented, while recently several megalithic.
The stability of luminescence signals stimulated by IR at elevated temperature was first investigated by Thomsen et al. Buylaert et al. Based on studies of the source of the IR stimulated luminescence signal by Murray et al. They applied this revised protocol to samples of Japanese loess, one with age control, and were unable to detect significant signal instability. As a result of these early studies, the feldspar pIRIR signal is now widely used in dating both sand-sized extracts of K-feldspars and polymineral fine-grains Buylaert et al.
Auclair et al. Despite the identification of much more stable IR signals from feldspar, few if any studies have tested their application to ceramics al Khasawneh et al. Even young heated materials should be well suited to pIRIR protocols, because the high temperature firing should completely empty any IR-sensitive trapped charge Murray et al. To test the usefulness of such signals, ceramics of broadly agreed age were collected from three superimposed strata from the archaeological site Pella Tabqat Fahl in Jordan.
The ages of these layers are based on stratigraphy, typology and serration of related finds see next section.
Luminescence dating facility
Tammy M. Elements ; 14 1 : 21— Understanding rates and variability of Earth-surface processes is vital to assessing natural hazards, landscape response to climate change and addressing concerns related to food security and water supply.
Finally, the study will test the very recently developed luminescence technique, rock-‐surface dating, which determines the last time rock surfaces were exposed.
The impetus behind this study is to understand the sedimentological dynamics of very young fluvial systems in the Amazon River catchment and relate these to land use change and modern analogue studies of tidal rhythmites in the geologic record. Many of these features have an appearance of freshly deposited pristine sand, and these observations and information from anecdotal evidence and LandSat imagery suggest an apparent decadal stability.
Signals from medium-sized aliquots 5 mm diameter exhibit very high specific luminescence sensitivity, have excellent dose recovery and recycling, essentially independent of preheat, and show minimal heat transfer even at the highest preheats. Significant recuperation is observed for samples from two of the study sites and, in these instances, either the acceptance threshold was increased or growth curves were forced through the origin; recuperation is considered most likely to be a measurement artefact given the very small size of natural signals.
Despite the use of medium-sized aliquots to ensure the recovery of very dim natural OSL signals, these results demonstrate the potential of OSL for studying very young active fluvial processes in these settings. An important facet of the development of a geochronological technique is the investigation of potential age range. Much recent work in the luminescence field has focused on maximum achievable ages using high-temperature post-infrared infrared pIRIR signals from feldspars [ 1 , 2 ].
In contrast for quartz optically stimulated luminescence OSL , the more efficient signal resetting coupled with environments where grain reworking is evident make it well suited to assessment of minimum achievable age. Notable examples are studies of young fluvial deposits [ 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 ] and dunes [ 7 , 8 , 9 , 10 , 11 ].
Regarding the application of OSL dating to fluvial sediments in the Amazon region, a number of studies have used the technique to try to constrain the origin and development of the drainage system, documenting Mid—Late Pleistocene ages [ 12 , 13 , 14 ], and OSL analyses have also been carried out to investigate the Late Pleistocene to Holocene development of fluvial bars [ 15 ].
The impetus behind this work was to investigate the feasibility of optically stimulated luminescence OSL dating of very young fluvial and shoreline landforms in the Amazon River catchment. The ultimate goal of the study is to use OSL to help understand the sedimentological dynamics of fluvial systems in the Amazon. This has relevance to the important issue of the anthropogenic effect of decades of land use and land cover change on the Amazon biome [ 16 , 17 , 18 ], that has impacted the stock of carbon and biodiversity [ 19 , 20 ] and resulted in erosion in many areas of the basin including along the rivers [ 21 ].
Surface dating by luminescence: An overview
Over the last 60 years, luminescence dating has developed into a robust chronometer for applications in earth sciences and archaeology. The technique is particularly useful for dating materials ranging in age from a few decades to around ,—, years. In this chapter, following a brief outline of the historical development of the dating method, basic principles behind the technique are discussed.
luminescence dating, and discuss initiatives relevant for the community. As the and timing of surface processes (Rittenour, ) to con- straining our.
On burial, surfaces are no longer exposed to daylight and accumulation of trapped electrons takes place till the excavation. This reduction of luminescence as a function of depth fulfils the prerequisite criterion of daylight bleaching. Thus rock artefacts and monuments follow similar bleaching rationale as those for sediments. In limestone and marble, daylight can reach depths of 0. The surface luminescence thermoluminescence, TL or OSL dating has been developed and further refined on various aspects of equivalent dose determination, complex radiation geometry, incomplete bleaching etc.
A historical review of the development including important applications, along with some methodological aspects are discussed. This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access. Adamiec G and Aitken MJ, Dose-rate convertion factors: update.
Luminescence Dating: Applications in Earth Sciences and Archaeology
Research article 11 Jul Correspondence : Benjamin Lehmann lehmann. Assessing the impact of Quaternary glaciation at the Earth’s surface implies an understanding of the long-term evolution of alpine landscapes. In particular, it requires simultaneous quantification of the impact of climate variability on past glacier fluctuations and on bedrock erosion. Here we present a new approach for evaluating post-glacial bedrock surface erosion in mountainous environments by combining terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide 10 Be TCN and optically stimulated luminescence OSL surface exposure dating.
Using a numerical approach, we show how it is possible to simultaneously invert bedrock OSL signals and 10 Be concentrations into quantitative estimates of post-glacial exposure duration and bedrock surface erosion.
depth below the cobble surface using intact slices from two different cobbles clast, and this suggests that the luminescence dating of rock surfaces may prove.
Nests built by mud-dauber and potter wasps in rock shelters in northern Australia 1 , 4 often overlie, and occasionally underlie, prehistoric rock paintings. Mud nests contain pollen, spores and phytoliths from which information about local palaeovegetation can be gleaned. Here we report a new application of optical dating 5 , 6 , 7 , using optically stimulated luminescence OSL , and accelerator mass spectrometry AMS 14 C dating of pollen 8 to determine the ages of mud-wasp nests associated with rock paintings in the Kimberley region of Western Australia 9 , Optical dating of quartz sand including the analysis of individual grains embedded in the mud of fossilized nests shows that some anthropomorphic paintings are more than 17, years old.
Reconstructions of past local environments are also possible from the range of pollen and phytolith types identified. This approach should have widespread application to studies of rock-art dating and late Quaternary environmental change on continents where mud-wasps once lived and other sources of palaeoecological information are absent.
1.4 Luminescence dating in archaeology
Optically stimulated luminescence and isothermal thermoluminescence dating of high sensitivity and well bleached quartz from Brazilian sediments: from Late Holocene to beyond the Quaternary? E-mail: andreos usp. E-mail: ligia. E-mail: ccfguedes gmail.
In Australia, luminescence dating has contributed much to archeology. In the context of the Australian land surface, an answer to a question posed by an.
Luminescence dating utilises energy deposited in mineral lattices by naturally occurring ionising radiation to record information encoding chronology, depositional process information, and thermal history records in ceramics, lithics, and sedimentary materials. Precision of dating varies from sample to sample, and from context to context, depending on individual sample characteristics mineralogy, luminescence sensitivity, stability and homogeneity of the radiation environment, and the quality of initial zeroing.
A well calibrated laboratory can produce accuracy at the lower end of the precision scale. For high quality work it is important that the environmental gamma dose rates are recorded in-situ at time of excavation, which is most readily facilitated by involving the dating laboratory in fieldwork. The key importance of luminescence dating within Scottish Archaeology lies in the nature of the events represented by the various dating materials.
In this respect, and in extending the range of dating materials and questions available, there have significant developments in recent years, and more can be anticipated. TL analysis has the advantage that it can also reveal thermal history information — enabling the thermal exposures of early ceramics, and heated stones to be estimated as a by product of dating. This has provided evidence for fuel poverty in prehistoric island communities in Scotland, and also in a contemporary setting has been used to assist civil engineers with assessing fire damage of modern concrete structures notably the Storebaelt and Channel Tunnel fires.
This has been applied to prehistoric settlements in Orkney, where there is evidence of abandonment of marginal settlements at times of environmental stress, and to Iron Age hut circles in the Scottish Borders, where abandonment coincides with the Roman occupation of the region. Other fire damaged structures, including spectacularly vitrified forts, can be dated by TL, as can burnt stone mounds which remain an abundant and enigmatic resource within the landscape.
In the sedimentary field there have also been important developments. A wide range of aeolian, fluvial, alluvial and colluvial materials have been studied worldwide for mainly quaternary research purposes. Archaeological applications are also increasingly prominent in the literature. The ability to date clean wind-blown sand layers in archaeological landscapes and sequences provide important opportunities to examine human-environment interactions, and in particular the impact of past storminess on early communities.
Luminescence dating of rock art and past environments using mud-wasp nests in northern Australia
Luminescence dating including thermoluminescence and optically stimulated luminescence is a type of dating methodology that measures the amount of light emitted from energy stored in certain rock types and derived soils to obtain an absolute date for a specific event that occurred in the past. The method is a direct dating technique , meaning that the amount of energy emitted is a direct result of the event being measured.
Better still, unlike radiocarbon dating , the effect luminescence dating measures increases with time. As a result, there is no upper date limit set by the sensitivity of the method itself, although other factors may limit the method’s feasibility.
We pioneer a technique of surface‐exposure dating based upon the characteristic form of an optically stimulated luminescence (OSL).
Springer Professional. Back to the search result list. Table of Contents. Hint Swipe to navigate through the chapters of this book Close hint. Abstract Half a century after the publication of the first Thermoluminescence TL ages, the field of Luminescence Dating has reached a level of maturity. Both research and applications from all fields of archaeological science, from archaeological materials to anthropology and geoarchaeology, now routinely employ luminescence dating. The advent of optically stimulated luminescence OSL techniques and the potential for exploring a spectrum from mono-minerallic single grains to polymineral multi-aliquots enhanced the applicability, accuracy and the precision of luminescence dating.
The present contribution reviews the physical basis, mechanisms and methodological aspects of luminescence dating; discusses advances in instrumentations and facilities, improvements in analytical procedures, and statistical treatment of data along with some examples of applications across continents. The case studies review the dating of heated and solar bleached archaeological material artefacts, sediments, rocks, rock art and buildings that cover all periods from Middle Palaeolithic to Medieval Eras and both Old and New World archaeology.