The aim of this paper is to provide people involved in geomorphological research a global overview about the principles and procedures of optical dating, from the field sampling to the age interpretation.Most of the publications actually focus on one part of either the method (, laboratory procedures, statistical treatment) or its applications, and available general literature for non-specialists is still uncommon.
2, the luminescence signal obtained by stimulation corresponds with a decay curve which shows the progressive emptying of the electrons from the traps.
A case study of fluvial sands from the lower terrace of the Moselle valley is then presented to describe the range of field and laboratory procedures required for successful luminescence dating.
The paper also reviews the place of OSL dating in geomorphological research in France and assesses its potential for further research, by focusing on the diversity of sedimentary environments and topics to which it can be usefully applied.
The wavelength of the signal is allocated to the nature of the mineral: the OSL from quartz is typically measured in ultra-violet (340-370 nm wavelength), while quartz also emits in blue (460-500 nm wavelength) and in orange-red (600-650 nm wavelength; Huntley , when the mineral is stored within the host-rock), natural radiation generates the trapping of electrons and the build-up of a latent luminescence signal; ii) when a grain is produced by mechanical erosion and transported (at the Earth’s surface, in the air, or in a river), it is exposed to sunlight.
This results in the release of trapped electrons (“bleaching”) and the emission of the luminescence signal.