Controls on luminescence signals in lake sediment cores: A study from Lake Suigetsu, Japan

Charlie L. Rex*, Richard A. Staff, David C.W. Sanderson, Alan J. Cresswell, Michael H. Marshall, Masayuki Hyodo, Daishi Horiuchi, Ryuji Tada, Takeshi Nakagawa

*Corresponding author for this work

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The luminescence characteristics of sediments are driven by a range of environmental factors and can be used as indicators of both local and regional environmental shifts. Hence, rapid luminescence profiling techniques are increasingly employed during multiproxy analysis of sediment cores, overcoming the practical limitations of traditional (dating) methods. One emerging application of luminescence profiling is in the palaeoenvironmental investigation of lake cores. This study demonstrates the versatility of rapid core profiling using portable optically stimulated luminescence and laboratory profiling techniques for appraising the luminescence characteristics of the Lake Suigetsu (Japan) sediment cores. These techniques were employed across four key time periods, each selected for their unique environmental context and significance on either a local or global scale, in order to identify relationships between down-core luminescence and environmental change. We demonstrate that the luminescence characteristics of the cores are susceptible to a range of environmental perturbations and can therefore act as proxies of past change. Additionally, the quantification of these luminescence signals, alongside an assessment of dose rate variations down-core, supports the notion that future luminescence dating is feasible. The results of this analysis contribute to the wider understanding of the application of luminescence techniques – both profiling and dating – to lake sediment cores.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101319
Number of pages8
JournalQuaternary Geochronology
Early online date06 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - 01 Aug 2022


  • Laboratory profiling
  • Lake sediment
  • Luminescence dating
  • Palaeoenvironment
  • Portable OSL


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