Survey of Palaeolithic sites by luminescence profiling, a case study from Eastern Europe

Burbidge, C.I., Sanderson, D.C.W. , Housley, R.A. and Jones, P. A. (2007) Survey of Palaeolithic sites by luminescence profiling, a case study from Eastern Europe. Quaternary Geochronology, 2(1-4), pp. 296-302. (doi: 10.1016/j.quageo.2006.05.024)

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A luminescence-based approach to the rapid characterisation of sites in terms of their datability and sedimentary history is described (luminescence profiling), and contrasting results presented for three Palaeolithic archaeological sites in Russia. Three mineral/grain-size fractions (polymineral silt-sized, polymineral sand-sized, quartz-enriched sand-sized) were separated from each of many small samples taken through the sites’ stratigraphies. Luminescence signals from the different fractions were measured using infra-red light, blue light, and thermal stimulation. Patterns in luminescence sensitivity and equivalent dose values are used to indicate which sites, samples, fractions and/or signals may yield meaningful luminescence ages, and the experimental effort that may be required to obtain said ages. Case studies range from a site where a detailed chronostratigraphy might be produced using a limited number of full luminescence dates to tie in the profiling results, to a site where profiling indicates there is little chance of producing useful luminescence dates. These interpretations are based on dialogue between the luminescence profiling results and archaeological, palaeoenvironmental, and geomorphological evidence. Luminescence profiling is shown to be a useful tool for understanding sedimentological process at each site, independent of full luminescence dating.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Sanderson, Professor David
Authors: Burbidge, C.I., Sanderson, D.C.W., Housley, R.A., and Jones, P. A.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:Quaternary Geochronology
Published Online:11 July 2006

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
323951Anomalous fading of luminescence in fieldspar minerals: mechanisms and solutionsMartin LeeEngineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)GR/R93247/01SCHOOL OF GEOGRAPHICAL & EARTH SCIENCES
340041Neanderthal climate preferences and tolerances - the need for a better chronologyRupert HousleyNatural Environment Research Council (NERC)NER/T/S/2002/00HU - ARCHAEOLOGY