On the applicability of post-IR IRSL dating to Japanese loess

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Abstract

Recent work on infrared stimulated luminescence (IRSL) dating has focussed on finding and testing signals which show less or negligible fading. IRSL signals measured at elevated temperature following IR stimulation at 50°C (post-IR IRSL) have been shown to be much more stable than the low temperature IRSL signal and seem to have considerable potential for dating. For Early Pleistocene samples of both European and Chinese loess natural post-IR IRSL signals lying in the saturation region of the laboratory dose response curve have been observed; this suggests that there is no significant fading in nature. As a contribution to the further testing of post-IR IRSL dating, we have used 18 samples from two Japanese loess profiles for which quartz OSL and tephra ages up to 600 ka provide age control. After a preheat of 320°C (60 s), the polymineral fine grains (4–11 μm) were bleached with IR at 50°C (200 s) and the IRSL was subsequently measured at 290°C for 200 s. In general, the fading uncorrected post-IR IRSL ages agree with both the quartz OSL and the tephra ages. We conclude that the post-IR IRSL signal from these samples does not fade significantly and allows precise and accurate age determinations on these sediments.

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