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Lithic Technology

The large lithic laboratory at IPHES (Institut Català de Paleoecologia i Evolució Social) is situated on the basement level (Level 0) and consists of two main areas. The first area is the microscopy lab, covering an area of 43 m2. It is fully equipped with a range of low to high power approach microscopes for detailed examination, catering to different needs. These include two USB microscopes (PCE-MM200 and Dino-lite) for versatile magnification and image capture, a Euromex DZ1 stereomicroscope, a ZEISS Aixoscope A1 metallographic microscope, a Hirox KH8700 3D digital microscope for capturing high-resolution images and obtaining three-dimensional views, and a Sensofar S Neox 3D optical profilometer that combines confocal, interferometry, and focus variation measuring techniques. The microscopy lab, although part of the lithic technology unit, is shared by researchers and students from various disciplines including zooarchaeology, palaeontology, anthropology, and archaeobotany. Within the laboratory, there is an experimental reference collection developed by the IPHES functional analysis group, primarily focusing on lithic tools made from materials like flint, quartzite, quartz, hornfels, basalt, and obsidian. This collection serves as a valuable resource for studies involving use-wear and residue analysis.

The lithic laboratory's second area, spanning 45 m2, is dedicated to lithic artifact analysis and refitting. It features five large tables that provide wide workspace for researchers. Additionally, the lab offers kits for drawing, measuring, and sample labelling to facilitate analysis and documentation. There also can be found equipment and facilities for sample cleaning and preparation, such as an ultrasonic cleaner and laboratory fume cupboard.

Lithic Technology Lab


Furthermore, the IPHES houses an additional room on the first floor, measuring 40 m2, specifically designed for lithic refitting studies. This room provides substantial space to accommodate refitting projects and related research activities.

Lithic Technology Lab