Luminescence dating method

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Forgers commonly use the bottom of an original broken vessel, which has no commercial value, and make a new fake vessel on top of it.

The TL operator generally takes samples for dating from the bottom, avoiding damage to the image of the artwork.

Carbon-14 has a half-life of 5,730 years so dating is limited to between a few hundred and about 50,000 years. It is also important that samples for dating are collected carefully to ensure they have not been contaminated with more recent carbon.

Radiocarbon analysis can only be used on organic materials, and is often used to date charcoal associated with campfires and archaeological deposits.

These grains absorb radiation over time from the surrounding sediments and the radiation (electrons) remain trapped within the mineral grain structure.

For instance, it is possible to date the wood support of a panel as well as canvas.A number of methods are used, all of which have their advantages, limitations and level of accuracy.Complex dating problems often use a variety of techniques and information to arrive at the best answer.This technique can determine ages between a few hundred years to more than 100,000 years.

It has been used at Willandra to date the layers above and below the location of Mungo Lady and Mungo Man , and the layers above and below the footprints horizon.

The method also assumes a 'zeroing' event in the life of the material, when it was either last heated or exposed to sunlight.

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