Thermoluminescence dating is generally not very accurate.
The accuracy of thermoluminescence dating is only about 15% for a single sample and 7 to 10% for a suite of samples in a single context.
A sample of the earth also needs to be collected so environmental radiation can be tested.The wetness of the soil and the sample should also be recorded. Unfortunately there are no affordable direct methods for dating pigments, except in some cases as we will see later.Generally, for example, we can’t establish when a vermilion stroke was brushed onto a painting, but we can date most of the materials that the pigments are painted on.The minerals that are used for thermoluminescence dating are mainly quartz and feldspar.
The last time a crystal was reheated and its electrons were released is known as a "clock resetting event".Samples should be placed in a polyethylene bag and sealed with electrical tape.To test the date we need to measure the sample’s thermoluminescence light which is then correlated to the accumulated dose of ionizing radiation.This usually occurs when the items are heated to 350 degrees Celsius.Therefore, in archaeology, thermoluminescence dating works best for ceramics, cooking hearths, incidentally fire-cracked rocks, and deliberately fire-treated rocks, such as flint or chert.Energy absorbed from ionizing radiation frees electrons to move through the crystal lattice, some of which are trapped at imperfections in the crystal lattice.