A large number of instruments, as well as new analytical procedures, have been developed recently and applied to archaeometry and conservation science. Here, an effort is made to summarize the most important such developments, with particular reference to the Earth and mineral sciences. Non-invasive or micro-invasive techniques are emphasized, i.e. those developed with the goal of reducing, as much as possible, the impact of sampling on art objects. The examples described are taken mostly from the work of the author and his colleagues and address problems in both archaeometry and conservation. Examples of objects in collections, of building materials and of archaeological materials are all considered.
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Environmental Mineralogy II
In 1997, the European Mineralogical Union (EMU) began organizing a series of Short Courses (‘Schools’) with the associated publication of a series of review volumes (the ‘EMU Notes in Mineralogy’) on topics of interest to mineral scientists. The second School was held in Budapest in May 2000, along with the publication of Volume 2 of the Notes, on the then emerging subject of Environmental Mineralogy. This volume (edited by D.J. Vaughan and R.A. Wogelius) was well received and has sold well in the 12 years since it appeared (such that very few copies remain available for purchase). Given the continuing demand for books in this field, the President and Council of EMU approached the editors and asked them to consider several options. These were: (1) simply to reprint the original volume; (2) to produce a new volume using the original chapter authors as far as possible; or (3) to organize a new School and accompanying volume. It was decided to take the second of these options and to publish what might be thought of as a ‘second edition’, although the extensive revisions undertaken in what we have entitled Environmental Mineralogy II justify regarding it as a new book, and hence in making it ‘Volume 13’ of the Notes. The layout and organization of this new book follow closely that used in the old volume. I was delighted to find that the great majority of contributors to the earlier volume were keen to take on the job of producing a new, up-to-date chapter on their chosen subject. Again, therefore, the book consists of 11 chapters, eight of which retain the same authors, and two of which have added one author (Kevin Taylor joins Andy Aplin for Chapter 4, and Kath Morris joins Charles Curtis for Chapter 9). In the case of Chapter 3, the previous authors are no longer actively involved in the area of soil science, and the challenge of that topic area has been ably taken up by David Manning. All of the chapters were subject to external peer review and I wish to thank Nick Bryan, Linda Campbell, Hugh Coe, Ian Freestone, Barry Johnson, Francis Livens, Jon Lloyd, Richard Pattrick, Claire Robinson, Eva Valsami-Jones and Dave Wray for their help with this important process. At the same time, it should be emphasized that any errors and imperfections that remain in this volume are solely the responsibility of the authors and editors.