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Thermoluminescence dating accuracy

The trapped charge accumulates over time at a rate determined by the amount of background radiation at the location where the sample was buried.Stimulating these mineral grains using either light (blue or green for OSL; infrared for IRSL) or heat (for TL) causes a luminescence signal to be emitted as the stored unstable electron energy is released, the intensity of which varies depending on the amount of radiation absorbed during burial and specific properties of the mineral.discovered that OSL and radiocarbon dates agreed in some samples, but the radiocarbon dates were up to 5800 years older in others.-deficient carbon from adjacent soils and Paleozoic carbonate rocks, a process that is also active today.This reworked carbon changed the measured isotopic ratios, giving a false older age.Luminescence dating refers to a group of methods of determining how long ago mineral grains were last exposed to sunlight or sufficient heating.It is useful to geologists and archaeologists who want to know when such an event occurred.These methods also do not suffer from overestimation of dates when the sediment in question has been mixed with “old carbon”, or -deficient carbon that is not the same isotopic ratio as the atmosphere.In a study of the chronology of arid-zone lacustrine sediments from Lake Ulaan in southern Mongolia, Lee et al.

For quartz, blue or green excitation frequencies are normally used and the near ultra-violet emission is measured.The older the sample is, the more light it emits, up to a saturation limit.The minerals that are measured are usually either quartz or potassium feldspar sand-sized grains, or unseparated silt-sized grains.It uses various methods to stimulate and measure luminescence.It includes techniques such as optically stimulated luminescence (OSL), infrared stimulated luminescence (IRSL), and thermoluminescence dating (TL).Thermoluminescence, or TL, has been used since the 1950s to determine the approximated firing date of pottery and burnt silicate materials.TL has a wide dating range; it has been used to date ceramics from a few hundred years old to geologic formations that are half a million years old.Most luminescence dating methods rely on the assumption that the mineral grains were sufficiently "bleached" at the time of the event being dated.For example, in quartz a short daylight exposure in the range of 1–100 seconds before burial is sufficient to effectively “reset” the OSL dating clock.The dose rate is usually in the range 0.5 - 5 grays/1000 years.The total absorbed radiation dose is determined by exciting, with light, specific minerals (usually quartz or potassium feldspar) extracted from the sample, and measuring the amount of light emitted as a result.


  1. Thermoluminescence dating is very useful for determining the age of pottery. A disadvantage to this technique is that in order to get accurate results, the.

  2. Abstract – Thermoluminescence TL dating is a powerful tool in archaeology, and its reliability has been. measurable with sufficient accuracy, and therefore.

  3. Firings can therefore be measured and serves as a reliable dating method. Dating of Ancient Ceramics by Means of Thermoluminescence, Riso. n.d.; S. J.

  4. Oct 21, 2011. Welcome to Aspects of Archaeology. In this series we take a closer look at different aspects of the world of archaeology.

  5. Apr 30, 2018. PDF On Jan 1, 2009, D. Richter and others published Burnt flint artifacts A new Thermoluminescence dating technique.

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