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Macro Charcoal Analysis: A modified technique used by the Department of Archaeology and Natural History

CollectionsANU School of Culture, History and Language
Title: Macro Charcoal Analysis: A modified technique used by the Department of Archaeology and Natural History
Author(s): Stevenson, Janelle
Haberle, Simon
Publisher: Canberra, ACT : PalaeoWorks, Dept. of Archaeology & Natural History, Research School of Pacific & Asian Studies, The Australian National University
Series/Report no.: PalaeoWorks Technical Report: No. 5
Description: 
The 'macro charcoal' analysis outline here is designed to be carried out on contiguously sampled sediments; ie. the whole core is able to be analysed. The need to develop a fast, low cost method for charcoal extraction has arisen from the realization that low resolution analysis does not give an adequate indication of the frequency or concentration of charcoal being deposited in a sediment column. Continuous sampling enables the researcher to assess the frequency of charcoal peak events or episodes and therefore provides a window into the nature of past fire regimes. Different methods fro charcoal extraction and analysis have been developed (see reading list below). Here we outline a method adopted at the Department of Archaeology and Natural History which is adapted from a method developed by Rhodes, A.N. (1995 A method for the preparation and quantification of microscopic charcoal from terrestrial and lacustrine sediment cores. The Holocene 8, 113-117.). Using this approach we have been able to complete extraction and analysis of around 32 samples in 2 half-day sessions in the lab.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1885/144170

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