The α-efficiency and its importance for ESR dating
The uncertainty in an ESR age results almost completely from the error in the evaluation of the annual dose. In the case of corals, α-efficiency has a high influence on DE (Paleodose). The published kα-values vary from 0.05 to 0.2, so the correct determination of kα is crucial. In this experiment, based on direct irradiation with an 241Am-source, we used seven samples (20 aliquots for each sample) with different ages. The first aim was to improve the measurement conditions to reach a reliable data base for the α-efficiency calculation and the second was the question of age dependency of kα. With respect to the results of our experiments we propose an α-efficiency value for corals of 0.06–0.07 which leads to younger ages of about 7–10% less than with the kα factor of 0.05 we used in previous studies.
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