20 Year Retrospective of National Center for Preservation Technology and Training sponsored Archaeology.

Part of: Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015)

Since 1994, the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training, a component of the National Park Service (ncptt.nps.gov), has engaged in state-of-the-art research in archaeological treatments and technologies. The Center provides grants, education, research, and training opportunities in the areas of archaeology and collections, architecture and engineering, materials conservation, and historic landscapes. To date, over $9 million dollars have been spent on sponsored research via our grants program. This symposium is a 20 year retrospective and is focused on the innovative contributions of the award recipients to the archaeological sciences and technologies. Specifically, the researchers will be re-examining their original work and addressing the impact to their respective fields, how their work has influenced their research, and progress in their study areas since the initial award. This seminar includes papers that cover topics ranging from the development and fielding of magnetic susceptibility, archaeogeophysics, multi-beam swath bathymetry, and a friction cone-penetrometer, to plasma extraction ¹⁴C analysis, site location probability models, lithic characterization, ceramic thin-section analysis, freshwater shell artifact and temper sourcing, aerial archaeology, and Native American consultation protocols.

Resources Inside This Collection (Viewing 1-11 of 11)

  • Documents (11)

  • Archaeology As The CRO Flies, 2002-2014: A Retrospective Of Twelve Years Of Powered Parachute Aerial Archaeology (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Tommy Hailey.

    After considering a number of alternatives for acquiring aerial images, in 2002 the Cultural Resource Office at Northwestern State University of Louisiana received a National Center for Technology and Training Research Grant to assess the suitability of the powered parachute as an archaeological aerial reconnaissance vehicle for site discovery, for detailed site investigation, and for cultural landscape studies. Since that time, this unique aerial platform has been successfully employed to...

  • The Archeological Dynamic Friction Cone Penetrometer (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Michael Russo.

    Archaeologists have used metal probes for centuries, and, more recently, their digitized descendant, the penetrometer, to locate artifacts and features that yield greater resistance in the soil. Most recently, geological miners and agricultural technologists have added additional instrumentality to the penetrometer to measure both resistance and friction. To determine if archeological soils and other midden features could be distinguished using a penetrometer employing both resistance and...

  • Cold plasma oxidation and "nondestructive" radiocarbon dating (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Marvin Rowe. Eric Blinman. Jeffrey Cox. John Martin. Mark MacKenzie.

    A decade ago, with partial funding from the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training, marvin Rowe and his students at TexasA&M University developed a cold plasma oxidation method for"nondestructive" radiocarbon sampling of organic materials. This sampling approach is applied to the whole artifact, is carried out under vacuum, plasma temperatures can be maintained below 100C, only organic carbon is oxidized (carbonate and oxalate are not sampled), and sampling leaves the artifact...

  • Detecting Mounds Using Airborne LiDAR: Case Studies from Iowa and Minnesota (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Joe Artz. William Whittaker. Emilia Bristow.

    Between 2009 and 2012, researchers at the the University of Iowa Office of the State Archaeologist (OSA) conducted a number of pilot studies in the application of airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) to find and map prehistoric burial mounds. Studies were conducted in Iowa and Minnesota, two states that have invested in high quality, statewide LiDAR data. These studies began with the master's thesis research of OSA GIS specialist, Melanie Riley, and included the NCPTT-funded development...

  • Development and Applications of a Minimally Destructive Method of Sourcing Shell via LA-ICP-MS (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Evan Peacock.

    Shell artifacts and shell-tempered ceramics can be chemically sourced to point of origin because shellfish are in approximate chemical equilibrium with the waterways they inhabit. Analyzing artifacts or shell temper via Laser Ablation-Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry is attractive due to the minimally destructive nature of the method. A pilot study in Mississippi funded by the NCPTT verified the potential of the method for sourcing shell-tempered pottery. Subsequent work includes the...

  • Development of Magnetic Susceptibility Instrumentation and Applications (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Rinita Dalan.

    A 1997 NCPTT grant to develop a prototype down-hole magnetic susceptibility instrument arose out of frustration with existing technology and a desire to expand archeological field studies of magnetic susceptibility. This instrument allowed high-resolution vertical investigations of susceptibility within a small diameter (ca. 2.5 cm) hole made with a push-tube corer. An NSF grant supported improvement of the prototype via robust laboratory and field testing, resulting in a final engineered...

  • Incorporating Image Analysis into Ceramic Thin-section Petrography (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Chandra Reedy.

    In 2002, our laboratory received a grant from NCPTT to research digital image analysis of petrographic thin sections. Two years previously we published our first paper on the application of image analysis to thin-section studies; the enormous potential of this line of research was apparent, but to fully pursue it would require a period of dedicated time and effort. The NCPTT grant gave us this time, and allowed us to purchase new software packages and upgrade our computer and microscope digital...

  • Multibeam Swath Bathymetry for Underwater Archaeological Investigations (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Daria Merwin. Roger Flood.

    Remote sensing technologies have long played an important role in underwater archaeological survey, and among the most recent (and increasingly used) additions to the toolkit is multibeam swath bathymetry, which operates by transmitting sound beams perpendicular to a research vessel's track and then processing the returned sonar data to produce a three-dimensional image of the sea floor. Multibeam survey can be particularly useful in water bodies where conditions are not conducive to other forms...

  • Native Americans and Archaeology Training Workshop: A Twenty Year Retrospective (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Kurt Dongoske.

    The Arizona Archaeological Council received funding from the NCPTT during its inaugural granting cycle to conduct a two day training workshop between Native Americans and archaeologists. The goal of the workshop was to promote a productive dialogue between Native Americans, Federal agency archaeologists, academic archaeologists, and archaeologists from the contracting community. Three issues were the focus of that workshop: consultation, oral tradition and archaeological interpretation, and...

  • NCPTT and the Growth of American Archeogeophysics (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Kenneth Kvamme.

    Before the turn of the millennium there were few practitioners of geophysical prospecting in American archaeology. In this relative vacuum NCPTT came into being at the right time, situated to support and promote these methods for site exploration, documentation and, in effect, preservation of site structural information because vast areas of the subsurface and its archeological content could finally be mapped. In the late 1990s NCPTT was an early supporter of research into the integration or...

  • Predictive Modeling of Archeological Sites in Death Valley National Park (2015)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Tad Britt. Lindsey Cochran.

    Predictive Modeling of Archeological Sites in Death Valley National Park Lindsey Cochran and Tad Britt. Archeologists have long worked to develop predictive modeling tools, techniques, and methods, as it is well known that human habitation locations are patterned and often align with environmental constraints. The National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT) and the National Park Service (NPS) have developed methods to move a database with over 2,000 archaeological sites...