OSL Dating in Archaeology

Portable Spectrofluorimeter for non-invasive analysis of cultural heritage artworks using LED sources. Luminescence spectroscopy – Spatially resolved luminescence – Time resolved luminescence – Electron spin resonance ESR. Flint and heated rocks – Ceramics and pottery – Unheated rock surfaces – Tooth enamel and quartz grains – Sediment dating. LexEva is a newly released evaluation software developed for analysis in luminescence research and dating. Archaeological sites often contain teeth from animals or humans or the site is contained in quartz bearing sediment. When sediments cover an archaeological site they are exposed to light and the mineral grains are bleached.

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The Luminescence Dating and Dosimetry Laboratory is developing new techniques for application to the dating of artefacts and deposits from sites that range widely in terms of chronological period, geographic location and material type. Recent work as focused on optically stimulated luminescence OSL techniques, in particular a novel experimental approach to the measurement of single grain OSL. A study produced, for the first time, absolute dates for a range of brick stupas located within the hinterland of Anuradhapura , contributing to the further development of a brick monument chronology for the region.

Ongoing work is examining whether unfired clay bricks from various sites can be dated accurately. OSL techniques are being applied to date sediment sequences in stratigraphic contexts associated with irrigation systems. In the absence of suitable organic samples for C dating, these systems are very difficult to date.

In archaeology the OSL method is used to date pottery and other heated materials (e.g., bricks, stones, earth) or sediments related to archaeological finds. The.

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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 of grain 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, covering all periods Middle Palaeolithic to Medieval and both Old and New World archaeology.

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Optically stimulated luminescence

Williams, A. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, Here we present the results of a multi-phase compliance-based archaeological excavations of a new bridge crossing the Hawkesbury-Nepean River northwest Sydney. These works identified a Last Glacial Maximum LGM aeolian deposit through which a colonial era drainage system had been excavated.

Luminescence dating is based on the perception in solid state physics that energy in archaeology, Quaternary geology, geomorphology and geoarchaeology.

Desert Archaeology crew chief Caleb E. Ferbrache explains how electrons trapped in rock can be used to date archaeological deposits—and why, unlike the more familiar carbon dating, OSL allows dating in the absence of preserved organic material. Most people know that archaeologists regularly use carbon also called radiocarbon to date materials they find.

While radiocarbon dating revolutionized archaeology and remains the most common dating method in the discipline, it is not the only method available. One alternative is optically stimulated luminescence. But what is optically stimulated luminescence OSL , other than a mouthful? Basically, it can help archaeologists figure out when things were buried by calculating the time that has passed since grains of quartz sand were last exposed to light.

This is possible due to some peculiar ways that radiation interacts with quartz. The most relevant thing to know about quartz is that it is full of traps.

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The Vienna luminescence lab was founded in the year The lab was build with the perspective of elaborating key questions of environmental and Quaternary research, as e. Markus Fiebig markus. Optically stimulated luminescence OSL dating determines the last exposure to sunlight of a sediment. Sedimentation ages are calculated by deviding the equivalent dose De by the dose rate Do. Sources of natural radioactivity in sediments are Th, U, U and 40K found in a lot of minerals, and cosmic radiation.

pology and archeology. At sites where stratigraphic integrity can be assured and sediment mixing can be discounted, OSL dating using multi- grain aliquots may.

Jack Rink about a new technique that he using to determine the age of the Crystal River archaeological site. He began his education in Florida where he received his Ph. After working on projects in Africa, Europe and Asia, Dr. Rink returned to Florida several years ago to work on the Salt Springs site near Palatka. He has since worked at sites around the state including several shell middens on St. Rink and his associates specialize in a special type of geochronology called Optical Stimulated Luminescence—or OSL for short—that is used to date archaeological sites and geological features.

OSL dating is a system of sampling and measuring the amount of energy that is trapped within soils. Quartz and quartzite accumulate energy in them through time. The rate of breakdown and energy release is relatively constant. However, some environmental factors such as moisture can affect the accumulation of this energy. Interestingly, both quartz and quartzite lose their accumulated energy whenever they are exposed to sunlight.

When you measure the amount of energy that is present within individual sand grains, it serves as a proxy measurement for the amount of time that the quartz grains have been buried since they were last exposed to sunlight.

OSL Laboratory

All sediments and soils contain trace amounts of radioactive isotopes of elements such as potassium , uranium , thorium , and rubidium. These slowly decay over time and the ionizing radiation they produce is absorbed dating mineral grains in the sediments such as quartz and potassium feldspar. The radiation dating charge to remain within luminescence grains in structurally unstable “electron traps”.

The trapped archaeology accumulates over time at a rate determined dating 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 long be emitted as osl archaeology unstable electron energy is released, the intensity of which varies depending on archaeology amount of radiation absorbed during dating and specific properties of the mineral.

Through relative dating a novel application of an alluvially deposited cobble pavement at least two applications, and osl dating in archaeology, orkney.

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. This is followed by a look at measurement equipment that is employed in determining age and its operation.

Luminescence properties of minerals used in dating are then examined after which procedures used in age calculation are looked at. Sample collection methods are also reviewed, as well as types of materials that can be dated. Continuing refinements in both methodology and equipment promise to yield luminescence chronologies with improved accuracy and extended dating range in the future and these are briefly discussed.

Luminescence – An Outlook on the Phenomena and their Applications.

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The OSL (optically stimulated luminescence) dating method exploits dosimetric properties of grains of minerals naturally occurring in sediments and man-made.

The OSL optically stimulated luminescence dating method exploits dosimetric properties of grains of minerals naturally occurring in sediments and man-made materials. In archaeology the OSL method is used to date pottery and other heated materials e. When compared with the radiocarbon method it makes possible dating objects containing no organic matter or originating in periods for which the radiocarbon method is less accurate due to the shape or lack of the calibration curve.

This paper discusses the details of recent advances in the method and several examples of its application to material from archaeological excavations of Medieval to Palaeolithic sites. Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Dating Methods


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