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How Big a Sample Will You Let Me Have? - Metallography in Archaeology 

05-04-2021 15:28

How Big a Sample Will You Let Me Have? - Metallography in Archaeology

How Big a Sample Will You Let Me Have? - Metallography in Archaeology

Dr. Peter Northover
University of Oxford (Retired)
The Open University (Materials Engineering)

Presented to the Eastern Virginia Chapter of ASM International on April 20, 2021

About the Presentation:

This presentation is based on two premises: that everything that happens to metal once it leaves the crucible or forge leaves a trace that can be recovered metallographically, and that the return in archaeologically or historically valuable information increases with sample size. The sample size is what you can convince the excavator or museum curator to let you take based on the predicted return in information.

About Our Presenter:

Dr. Peter Northover has a BA and DPhil in Metallurgy from the University of Oxford, UK. He was born in Oxford but grew up on the Isle of Wight. He started working on archaeological excavations when he was 15 and, after meeting parental opposition to reading archaeology at university, he moved to metallurgy.

After completing his doctorate in stress corrosion and hydrogen embrittlement, he obtained a post-doc position in 1974 to analyse all the Bronze Age metalwork in Wales, a project he is still trying to finish. Since then he has continued to work in archaeometallurgy, almost always with non-ferrous and precious metals.

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