Thermoluminescence dating sediments
Luminescence dating is good for between a few hundred to (at least) several hundred thousand years, making it much more useful than carbon dating.The term luminescence refers to the energy emitted as light from minerals such as quartz and feldspar after they've been exposed to an ionizing radiation of some sort.
The method is a direct dating technique, meaning that the amount of energy emitted is a direct result of the event being measured.
The exposure to radioactive elements continues, and the minerals begin again storing free electrons in their structures.
If you can measure the rate of acquisition of the stored energy, you can figure out how long it has been since the exposure happened.
Electrons from these substances get trapped in the mineral's crystalline structure, and continuing exposure of the rocks to these elements over time leads to predictable increases in the number of electrons caught in the matrices.
But when the rock is exposed to high enough levels of heat or light, that exposure causes vibrations in the mineral lattices and the trapped electrons are freed.
Better still, unlike radiocarbon dating, the effect luminescence dating measures increases with time.