OSL dating of the Middle Pleistocene Leine valley fill (N Germany): timing Palaeolithic findings

Julia Roskosch1, Jutta Winsemann1, Axel Weitkamp1, Lukas Pollok1, Ulrich Pollom2, Christian Brandes1, Sumiko Tsukamoto2, Utz Böhner3, Henning Haßmann3, Manfred Frechen2
1 Institut für Geologie, Leibniz Universität Hannover
2 Leibniz-Institut für Angewandte Geophysik (LIAG)
3 Niedersächsisches Landesamt für Denkmalpflege

P 1.7 in Progress in Quaternary Stratigraphy

The Leinebergland area south of the northwest German Lowlands is an important archaeological site in northern central Europe for Lower (Acheulian) and Middle Palaeolithic (Mousterian) hominid remains and stone artefacts .These findings are mainly embedded in Pleistocene deposits of the Leine valley near Sarstedt (Czarnetzki et al., 2001).

The Leine valley was probably affected by both the Elsterian and Saalian glaciations. The glacigenic deposits are separated by Middle Pleistocene fluvial sediments (Rohde, 1994). Although a lot of research has been conducted concerning these deposits of the Leine valley, a comprehensive geological model, including a high-resolution chronostratigraphic framework is missing for the artefact-bearing sediments. 

In this study, we use an interdisciplinary approach to reconstruct the Middle Pleistocene depositional environment and to investigate the contemporaneous human cultural evolution, combining methods from archeologogy, palaeo-anthropology, genetics and geology.

The reconstruction of the depositional environment is based on outcrop and borehole data, shear wave seismic profiles and 3D subsurface modelling (GOCAD®).

For numerical age determination, we conduct optically stimulated luminescence dating techniques on pure monomineralic coarse-grained (100-200 µm) potassium-rich feldspar minerals. For equivalent dose determination, a pulsed infrared stimulated luminescence signal is measured. Preheat is employed at 250 °C for 60 s, and IR stimulation is carried out at 50 °C for 400 s (with 50 µs on-time and 200 µs off-time) in order to obtain a stable luminescence signal.



Czarnetzki, A., Gaudzinski, S., Pusch, C., 2001. Hominid skull fragments from Late Pleistocene layers in Leine Valley (Sarstedt, District of Hildesheim, Germany). J. Hum. Evol. 41, 133-140.

Rohde, P., 1994. Weser und Leine am Berglandrand zur Ober- und Mittelterrassen-Zeit. E&G, Quat. Sci. J. 44, 106-133.

last modified 2012-07-19