Extended-range luminescence dating of quartz and alkali feldspar from aeolian sediments in the eastern Mediterranean

Galina Faershtein, Naomi Porat, Ari Matmon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) of quartz is an established technique for dating late Pleistocene to late Holocene sediments. Unfortunately, this method is often limited to up to 100ĝka (thousands of years). Recent developments in new extended-range luminescence techniques show great potential for dating older sediments of middle and even early Pleistocene age. These methods include thermally transferred OSL (TT-OSL) and violet stimulated luminescence (VSL) for quartz and post-infrared infrared stimulated luminescence (pIRIR) for feldspar. Here we investigate the luminescence behaviour of the TT-OSL, VSL, and pIRIR signals of quartz and feldspar minerals of aeolian sediments of Nilotic origin from the eastern Mediterranean. We sampled a 15ĝm thick sequence (Kerem Shalom) comprising sandy calcic palaeosols, which is part of a sand sheet that covers an extensive region in south-western Israel. Dose recovery and bleaching experiments under natural conditions indicated that the pIRIR250 signal is the most suitable for dating the Nilotic feldspar. Luminescence intensity profiles revealed natural saturation of the three signals at the same depth of ĝ1/46ĝm, indicating that ages of samples below that depth are minimum ages. Using TT-OSL and pIRIR250, a minimum age of 715ĝka for the base of the section was obtained, suggesting aeolian sand accumulation along the eastern Mediterranean coastal plain already since the early Pleistocene. Our results indicate that both TT-OSL and pIRIR250 can accurately date aeolian sediments of Nilotic origin up to 200ĝka and that minimum ages can be provided for older samples up to the early Pleistocene.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-118
Number of pages18
Issue number1
StatePublished - 24 Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Financial support. This research was supported by the Israel Ministry of Energy (grant no. 214-17-005), and by the Israel Science Foundation (grant no. 1871/16).

FundersFunder number
Israel Science Foundation1871/16
Ministry of Energy, Israel214-17-005


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