Laboratory for Archaeological Materials and Ancient Technologies

Recent years have seen a growing interest in the application of natural sciences in archaeology, based on the awareness that there is a wealth of data that cannot be seen by the naked eye that is extremely important and relevant for archaeological research. This is true for microscopic elements in archaeological field work, as well as for the microscopic dimension of finds made of various materials such as pottery, metal and glass. The laboratory was established in 2018 in order to allow analytic research of a wide range of ancient materials and technologies from different periods, beginning with prehistory and up until the Middle Ages.

The laboratory is equipped with analytical instruments that enable material identification, including an FTIR (Infra-red spectroscopy), XRF (X-ray analysis of elements) and an opticall microscope (which allows for metallurgic, petrographic and botanical research, among others). The laboratory also has advanced equipment for samples preparation, including an electric saw, and a high-performance polisher.

The laboratory is run by Dr. Naama Yahalom-Mack, an archaeometallurgist and senior lecturer in the Department of Biblical Archaeology, and is open to conduct a wide range of research with the cooperation of faculty, students and other researchers.