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Coastal and Offshore Archaeological Research Services (COARS)

Dating of Marine Sediments for Archaeological Purposes

COARS are hosting a one day informal discussion meeting at NOCS on the 15th January 2015 entitled 'Recovery, dating and interpretation of Marine Sediments for Archaeological Purposes'. A series of specialists will be in attendance to enable discussion on developing best practice and advancing methodologies. The meeting is aimed national and local curators, and those working in the wider archaeological sector.

Fluctuations in sea level and the extent of the ice sheets over hundreds of thousands of years has meant that areas now submerged beneath the sea were once dryland and suitable for human occupation. Over many years these areas have yielded important archaeological finds. However recovering, sampling, and dating such deposits (and finds), when encountered, can pose many challenges, especially when they are deeply buried beneath more recent sediments or in deep water. Over the past few decades there have been notable advances in the ability derive the age of a wide range of deposit types, particularly for older deposits associated with previous warm climatic phases (interglacials). The purpose of this meeting is to discuss how we identify, recover and date suitable materials in the marine environment and the range of techniques (and recent advances made) that are now available.

The tone for the day will be deliberately informal, to allow participants to ask questions and discuss emerging issues. Broadly four themes will be explored through the day, kick started by 30 minute specialist talks:

The meeting is aimed academics, practitioners and students within the fields of archaeology, Quaternary science and geoscience. Those attending should have some prior understanding of available dating techniques and / or those who attended the preceding course on Marine Geotechnical Investigations and Maritime Archaeology.

The registration fee is £20 which includes refreshments and lunch. To book a place on this course please visit the University of Southampton Online Store and select option for the 'Day Three Discussion meeting only'


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