Lowe, D. J., & Alloway, B. V. (2015). Tephrochronology. In W. J. Rink & J. W. Thompson (Eds.), Encyclopaedia of Scientific Dating Methods (pp. 783–799). Dordrecht: Springer. http://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6304-3_19
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/9457
Tephrochronology is the use of primary, characterized tephras or cryptotephras as chronostratigraphic marker beds to connect and synchronize geological, paleoenvironmental, or archaeological sequences or events, or soils/paleosols, and, uniquely, to transfer relative or numerical ages or dates to them using stratigraphic and age information together with mineralogical and geochemical compositional data, especially from individual glass-shard analyses, obtained for the tephra/cryptotephra deposits. To function as an age-equivalent correlation and chronostratigraphic dating tool, tephrochronology may be undertaken in three steps: (i) mapping and describing tephras and determining their stratigraphic relationships, (ii) characterizing tephras or cryptotephras in the laboratory, and (iii) dating them using a wide range of geochronological methods. Tephrochronology is also an important tool in volcanology, informing studies on volcanic petrology, volcano eruption histories and hazards, and volcano-climate forcing. Although limitations and challenges remain, multidisciplinary applications of tephrochronology continue to grow markedly.
This is an authors accepted version of a chapter published in the book: Encyclopaedia of Scientific Dating Methods. © 2015 Springer. Used with permission.