Water samples should be stored in inert plastic bottles with tightly sealed screw tops and a negligible air gap.
Samples are normally taken within the laboratory where we have all the necessary facilities.
We are always seeking to keep turn-around times to a minimum but some delay is inevitable because of the complexity of the dating process and because of fluctuations in demand.
The current estimated turnaround time for commercial samples submitted now is: Samples should be well protected in packaging that is not likely to contaminate the samples.
Luminescence dating is particularly appropriate when radiocarbon dating is not possible (either where no suitable material is available or for ages beyond the radiocarbon age limit) or for applications affected by radiocarbon plateau effects (e.g.
post 1700 AD, early Iron Age contexts, late glacial timescales) and when the relationship between the organic materials and the archaeological context is uncertain.
All samples submitted to the laboratory must be accompanied by a sample submission form that gives the details of the sample we need. In addition, we would ask submitters to look at our Policy on the dating of Antiquities and sign our terms and conditions.
The typical range for burnt stone or sediment is from about 100 to 300,000 years.
Please see section on sample section and identification to determine the types of material suitable for analysis and for information on restrictions on what we can date.
Also see our information on methods for further information including the expected precision of our measurements.
This section covers the submission of standard sample types.
If you are a scientist interested in submission of pre-prepared material or joint research projects, please contact the laboratory.