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Portable XRF Analysis of Anthropogenic Soils from the North Coast of Peru: A Comparative Study of Sample Preparation Methods

Author(s): Melissa Litschi ; Kayeleigh Sharp

Year: 2016

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Summary

The increasing use of portable x-ray fluorescence (pXRF) spectrometers in compositional studies of archaeological materials has led to an ongoing debate over proper use of this equipment, including procedures for sample preparation and homogenization. Due to the diverse nature of archaeological materials, sample preparation methods should be tailored to specific research questions and material types.

This study examines the impacts of different sample preparation methods on pXRF analysis of anthropogenic soils to obtain a multi-elemental characterization of living surfaces for activity-area analysis. Here we present a comparative analysis of 150 prepared and unprepared soil samples, including floor scrapings and feature contents, from the Songoy-Cojal site complex on the north coast of Peru. Sample preparation includes grinding and sieving (2mm screen) of the soils to create a homogenized sample. The results of this comparative study will illuminate the strengths and weaknesses of different sample preparation procedures for future pXRF analysis of soils at this site and elsewhere in the region.


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Portable XRF Analysis of Anthropogenic Soils from the North Coast of Peru: A Comparative Study of Sample Preparation Methods. Melissa Litschi, Kayeleigh Sharp. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 404936)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
South America


Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.691; min lat: -56.945 ; max long: -31.113; max lat: 18.48 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America