At the very beginning of term the Institute of Archaeology, UCL, runs an experimental archaeology course colloquially referred to as 'PrimTech'. It's been running since 1982, when I am reliably informed Peter Drewitt was in charge, and takes all of the first year undergraduates away camping for a long weekend at a small scout camp… Continue reading UCL Primtech 2011 – running the metalworking sessions
Sampling Blooms from Austria
Today I sampled some bloom pieces that make up part of a small set of debris sent to me by Brigitte Cech, an independant archaeological researcher working on the Ferrum Noricum sites. Brigitte was pretty sure this was likely to be a Roman site, so she had a look using a metal detector and a… Continue reading Sampling Blooms from Austria
Iron ore reduction in a bloomery furnace – part 3
Well it looks like I've wrapped up the first draft of my iron smelting chemistry and processes piece and sent it off to my supervisors. It's not the literature review they hoped for, but I figure this way I won't have to explain anything when I talk about why this paper is ground-breaking or that… Continue reading Iron ore reduction in a bloomery furnace – part 3
Why do I study iron?
I've been doing some reading in an attempt to wrap up my piece on iron smelting chemistry and processes, and I was thinking about why iron is such an interesting subject to study. I think it probably comes down to the juxtaposition between incredible utility and practicality of the metal, and the sheer difficulty and… Continue reading Why do I study iron?
New projects and anticipation!
So here at Finds and Features life's been pretty hectic. Not only do I have a bunch of deadlines, but I've just moved house! On the up side, I now have a large room in a lovely flat with lovely people, and even some shelves of my own. On the down side, all my photocopies… Continue reading New projects and anticipation!
Iron ore reduction in a bloomery furnace – part 2
I've spent a lot of hours over the last couple of days trying to express every variable of bloomery iron smelting and their complex and dependent relations. At the moment, I can't seem to do it in any way that doesn't look like a spider covered in multi-coloured ink had a seizure on my page.… Continue reading Iron ore reduction in a bloomery furnace – part 2
World of Iron Conference 2009
Review of the World of Iron Conference, 2009, held at the Natural History Museum.