Archaeometry of ancient metals
Metals are basic commodities of high importance in ancient societies. The material remains of the metallurgical activities like wastes (slags), products (objects) and structures (furnaces) can be studied by the means of techniques used in natural sciences, like chemical analysis, measures of physical caracteristics, mineralogical and petrographical investigations.
This site provides a general introduction on archaeometallurgy and more specific outlines on our current research, our laboratory facilities and our publications.
The main focus concerns the archaeometry of the ancient iron industry: ore mining, primary production of iron and smithing techniques. Many examples of studies of archaeological remains in Switzerland and abroad are presented, including field prospections, archaeological excavations, laboratory analyses, experimental and ethnographical approches.