Synchrontron X-ray Analysis of Ancient and Historical Metalwork at Argonne Laboratory: Applications for Archaeometry, Preservation, and Authentication

Dr. David Peterson
Idaho State University
Department of Anthropology

Center for Archaeology, Materials, and Applied Spectroscopy

Dr. Peterson will discuss the uses of synchrotron X-rays at the the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory for fluorescence and diffraction of ancient metalwork from China, the Near East, and Eurasia, and of European and Islamic astrolabes dating from the 14th-18th centuries AD. These experiments have been done for a variety of reasons, including authentication of museum collections, understanding of the technology and sources of materials used to make the pieces, and for assessing the potential of synchrotron analysis for non-destructive examination of such artifacts and their preservation for future study and display. The presentation will focus on Peterson's collaborative research on ancient Eurasian copper and bronze from Daghestan (in the northeastern Caucasus), which will be submitted for publication later this year and has been supported as part of an Argonne Board of Governors Strategic Collaborative Initiative seed grant.