Discoveries in the 1980s and 1990s that exposure of quartz and feldspar grains to a tunable light source, initially with lasers and later by light emitting diodes, yield luminescence components that are solar reset within seconds to minutes, expanded greatly the utility of the method (Huntley et al., 1985; Hütt et al., 1988; Aitken, 1998).
95% reduction in OSL within 4 seconds of exposure to light from blue diodes Optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating or optical dating provides a measure of time since sediment grains were deposited and shielded from further light or heat exposure, which often effectively resets the luminescence signal (Fig.1).
This technique, as thermoluminescence, was originally developed in the 1950s and 1960s to date fired archaeological materials, like ceramics (Aitken, 1985).
Ensuing research in the 1970s documented that marine and other sediments with a prior sunlight exposure of hours to days were suitable for thermoluminescence dating (Wintle and Huntley, 1980).
Several studies have used luminescence dating to investigate sand mobilization activity in extreme western areas and the southern margin of the Thar Desert, India.
However, room exists for a chronology of sand profiles for the northern margins of the Thar Desert.
The Ghaggar River flood plain at Rajasthan, northwestern India, in the northern margin of the Thar Desert, is bordered by sand dunes.Elucidation of the environmental changes of the Ghaggar Basin requires knowledge of many aspects of sand dune formation.We measured optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) using the single aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol for sand of eight palaeo-dunes and two flood silts of both sides of the present Ghaggar Basin and Chautang Basin flood plains.Their OSL ages were obtained respectively, as 15–10 ka or 5 ka, and 9–8 ka.Results of this study reinforce the hypothesis that sand dune deposition had started or had already been completed by 15‐10 ka.Aeolian deposition was subdued by enhanced moisture during 9–8 ka.