fragment of burnt bone from Figueira Brava cave (Portugal; the bone is seen in plane polarised light and is ca. 1 mm wide)
The laboratory is equipped for the study of archaeological sediments by means of optical microscopy, in particular through the technique known as â€śsoil micromorphologyâ€ť. This technique allows Â geoarchaeologists to determine what dynamics originated archaeological deposits, to analyse their components and features, to distinguish anthropic versus natural inputs â€“ in a nutshell, to understand site formation processes. To do this, undisturbed samples are collected from the site and impregnated, and 25-30-micron-thick thin sections are cut from them. The thin sections are then observed under the polarising (or â€śpetrographicâ€ť) microscope â€“ a customised Olympus BX51P microscope.
thin section under the petrographic microscope