Thermoluminescence dating pottery
The error limits on the dates obtained are typically in the range of 5 to 10%.
Our standard cost for OSL dating is £550 VAT per sample but prices can vary depending on the nature and number of samples (see our schedule of charges).
Here at Oxford Authentication we have specialised in authenticating ceramic antiquities since 1997.
We are also able to conduct sample collection outside of the UK if the client is willing to cover additional transport, accommodation and subsistence costs.
Postgraduate students registered for a degree course within a UK university which does not house a luminescence laboratory may be eligible to apply for an award through a joint scheme set up with the Quaternary Research Association (
Likewise, projects central to the Laboratory's research interests may be carried out at a reduced charge.
The ancient piece : (a) is way above the background (c), and approximately midway between background and (b) The modern piece : (a) is only just above the background (c) and way below (b) Porcelain and certain other types of clay cannot be tested using the fine-grain method. The TL reader is programmed to measure changes in the 110C peak of quartz (the pre-dose peak) in the clay.
Each time the sample is irradiated and then heated, the pre-dose peak increases. The first increase is due to the natural dose which the piece has absorbed over its life-time.
Testing is carried out in our Oxfordshire laboratory by staff trained to the highest standards.