Archaeology and Archaeometry

Analyzing Cultural Heritage

Analyzing Cultural Heritage

We learn about our collective histories through the recovery and analysis of objects and artifacts, and based on the context in which they are found. Knowing the composition of artifacts feeds the imagination to enter the world of our ancestors. From the tracing of artifacts to the origins of their raw materials, to mapping technological change through time based on compositional variations in anthropogenic materials, we are gaining more insights into the paths that led us to our present. Portable, mobile, and flexible approaches to analysis, with all of the capabilities of a lab-based analytical suite, can help you take us back in time.

 

Application examples

Application Examples

Native American arrow heads

Obsidian and Stone Sourcing – Keys to Prehistoric Trade Networks

Stone tools and objects are a sustaining record of ancient societies. The compositions of stone tools are link them to their source and help establish otherwise forgotten details about exchange networks.
Authentic silver coins of ancient Rome

Dating Roman silver coins through their compositions

The composition of a coin places them in their historic time and context, offering insight into the political situation at the time of manufacture. But can we get to the true composition of an historic coin?
old clay jug with cracks

Analysis of archaeological ceramics by SEM-EDS

Detailed investigation of ceramics reveals much about the materials of manufacture, techniques of firing, and information on uses. SEM-EDS analysis is a key to digging down to the micron level in these records of early history.
Native AmMicroCT- Tomography of Ceramicserican arrow heads

MicroCT- Tomography of Ceramics

Investigations of the interior structure of archaic ceramics with X-ray Microscopy allows differentiation of the density and distribution of various mineral inclusions.
X-Ray Microdiffraction on a Small Piece of Skin

X-Ray Microdiffraction on a Small Piece of Skin

Recently, we performed microdiffraction measurements on a small piece of skin (2 mm x 2 mm) of the world-famous "Oetzi which is one of the best preserved mummified humans ever discovered (EDWARDS et al., 1996).
Qualitative Analysis of Rare Egyptian Archeological Objects

Qualitative Analysis of Rare Egyptian Archeological Objects

X-ray Microscopy provided a unique opportunity to non-destructively investigate the internal structure of these artifacts.

Recent Publications

Recent Publications

Interested in analysis of ancient bronzes? Here's a study that uses Bruker's TRACER 5 to understand the beginnings of bronze metalwork in Malta.

Learn more here:

The Emergence of Copper-Based Metallurgy in the Maltese Archipelago: an archaeometric perspective

Tanasi, D., Tykot, R.H., Hassam, S., Vianello, A. 

STAR: Science & Technology of Archaeological Research, 2019

Bruker's TRACER 5 has been used for non-destructive analysis of stone artifacts and regional volcanic rock sources to establish production and regional exchange networks in the New Britain area of Papua New Guinea.

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Detecting exchange networks in New Britain, Papua New Guinea: geochemical comparisons between axe-adze blades and in situ volcanic rock sources

Penguilley, A., Brand, C., Flexner, J., Specht, J., Torrence, R.

Archaeology in Oceania, 54, 200-213, 2019

Bulk mineralogical compositions of important Terra Sigillata ceramics were determined in this recent study by ALPHA FTIR to shed light on manufacture techniques from three separate and distinguishable production sites.

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Comparing ceramic technologies: The production of Terra Sigillata in Puteoli and in the Bay of Naples
Grifa, C., Germinario, C., De Bonis, A., Langella, A., Mercurio, M., Izzo, F., Smiljanic, D., Guarino, V., Di Mauro, S., Soricelli, G.
Archaeology in Oceania, 54, 200-213, 2019

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