Friday, October 31, 2014

Society for American Archaeology Call for applications for two student awards in Geoarchaeology:

The Geoarchaeology Interest Group of the Society for American Archaeology would like to invite qualified students to apply for the Douglas C, Kellogg Award, and the MA/MS Research Award.

The Douglas C. Kellogg Award ($500) is granted to students who are actively working on their doctoral dissertations. The award will provide support for aspects of dissertation research, with an emphasis on field or laboratory analyses that are necessary for completion of the project. To qualify for the award, students should be registered at the Doctoral level with majors in the fields of anthropology, archaeology or earth sciences/geology. Their proposed project should include applications of geoscientific methods to archaeological questions, and they should make clear in their applications that they are preparing for an eventual career in geoarchaeology. The memorial award is provided by the Douglas C. Kellogg Fund for Geoarchaeological Research.

Deadline for application: 30 November, 2014; before midnight, Pacific time

Application materials: (1) a research proposal, maximum 3 pages (excluding references) that clearly describes the research project and its potential contributions to the archaeology of North or South America; (2) a CV, and (3) two letters of support, one of which must be from the chair of the dissertation committee that certifies the student's Doctoral candidacy and expected graduation date. 

Please submit materials electronically (pdf format preferred) to: Dr. Susan Mentzer, susan.mentzer@ifu.uni-tuebingen.de

File names should include the first and last name of the applicant, and the award name should be indicated in the title of the proposal. 


The MA/MS Award ($500) is granted to students who are actively working on their MA or MS projects. The award will provide support for research, with an emphasis on field or laboratory analyses that are necessary for completion of the MA/MS thesis or report. To qualify for the award, students should be registered at the MA or MS level with majors in the fields of anthropology, archaeology or earth sciences/geology. Their proposed project should include applications of geoscientific methods to archaeological questions.

Deadline for application: 30 November, 2014; before midnight, Pacific time

Application materials: (1) a research proposal, maximum 3 pages (excluding references) that clearly describes the research project and its potential contributions to the archaeology of North or South America; (2) a CV, and (3) two letters of support, one of which must be from the chair of the thesis committee that certifies the student's role in the project and expected graduation date. 

Please submit materials electronically (pdf format preferred) to: Dr. Susan Mentzer, 

File names should include the first and last name of the applicant, and the award name should be indicated in the title of the proposal. 



If you have an questions about either award that are not answered here or on the SAA website, please contact me at susan.mentzer@ifu.uni-tuebingen.de.

Monday, October 20, 2014

MaSC Workshop on LA-ICPMS

Seventh MaSC Workshop and Meeting
The Art Institute of Chicago, Northwestern University, the Field Museum, and Agilent Technologies
Chicago, USA
17-22 May 2015
Announcement and Call for Papers


The 7th Workshop and Meeting of the Users’ Group for Mass Spectrometry and Chromatography (MaSC) will take place in Chicago from Sunday 17th – Friday 22nd May 2015. The workshop, hosted jointly by the Art Institute of Chicago, Northwestern University, the Field Museum, and Agilent Technologies, will take place on 17-20 May. The meeting will be held at the Art Institute of Chicago on 21-22 May.


Workshop, 17-20 May 2015:

The theme of the workshop will be applications of inorganic and isotope ratio (IR) MS techniques for the study of art and archaeology. It will provide a unique and valuable opportunity for participants to compare and assess the relative advantages of several MS techniques – ICP-MS, LA-ICP-MS and related IR-MS methods – for the characterisation of diverse materials including metals, glass, ceramics, minerals and pigments. IR-MS analysis of organic materials will not be the focus of the workshop but applications will be discussed.

The Workshop will begin with a welcome/orientation session the afternoon of 17 May at the Art Institute of Chicago. Practical workshop sessions, including lectures, demonstrations and hands-on training, will take place on 18-20 May at Northwestern University, the Field Museum and Agilent Technologies (the Northwestern and Agilent laboratories are a short drive from downtown Chicago; transportation between workshop locations will be arranged). Workshop instructors include Marc Walton and Monica Ganio (Northwestern), Laure Dussubieux and Mark Golitko (Field Museum), Patrick Degryse (Leuven University), Andrew Shortland (Cranfield University), and Jon Talbott (Agilent Technologies).

The workshop will be limited to 15 participants. Those wishing to attend are requested to submit a short paragraph describing their experience with mass spectrometry and how they would benefit from the workshop, which should be included in the registration form (see below) and sent to MASC2015AIC@artic.edu before 15 December 2014.

The registration fee for the workshop is USD 350.


Meeting, 21-22 May 2015:

The meeting will be held at the Art Institute of Chicago and will comprise discussions and presentations on novel applications of chromatographic and mass spectrometric techniques to the study of art and cultural artefacts. The meeting will include a session on inorganic and isotope ratio MS, but contributions on a broad range of topics are encouraged. We hope to create an informal atmosphere for the exchange of ideas, and so discussions of work in progress are welcomed. A reception will be held at the Art Institute the evening of Thursday 21st May.

Those interested in presenting a paper or poster should submit an abstract of up to 200 words to MASC2015AIC@artic.edu before 15 December 2014.

The registration fee for the meeting is USD 150 for those who register before 15 February 2015, or USD 200 after this deadline. The registration fee for students is USD 75.



Details of the workshop and meeting and a registration form can be found on the MaSC website, www.mascgroup.org. Questions can be addressed to the local organisers and MaSC committee, c/o Ken Sutherland and Marc Walton, at MASC2015AIC@artic.edu.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Archaeological science is in the news!

According to a recent article in Smithsonian magazine, researchers used ground-penetrating radar and GPS-guided magnetometers to produce a 3-D map of underground features in a 4-mile-square area west of Stonehenge. Numerous previously unknown structures were found, helping to understand the geographical and religious context for the monument.

The work was done by Stonehenge Hidden Landscape Project, a collaboration between a British team and Austria's Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological Prospection and Virtual Archaeology.

Here are some sources for more information:

  • September 2014 issue of Smithsonian magazine (E. Caesar, "What Lies Beneath," vol 45 number 5, cover photo and pp. 30-41).
  • BBC news (http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-29126854). 
  • A video will appear on Smithsonian Television later this month (see http://www.smithsonianchannel.com/sc/web/show/3407073/stonehenge-empire for schedule).