Ancient Technologies: The Egyptian Sintered-Quartz Ceramics
PHILICA Article number 426
10 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2016
Date Written: September 14, 2014
To physicists and engineers, ceramics represent materials demonstrating excellent strength and hardness, materials that can serve as electrical insulators or conductors, some of them being able of a high-temperature superconductivity. To researchers working in archaeology and art history, ceramics mean objects such as figurines, tiles and tableware helping understanding cultures and technologies of the past. They are among the most common artifacts to be found in archaeological sites, because made of an imperishable material. Then, ceramics are for interdisciplinary studies the subjects by excellence. Here we will discuss the Egyptian faience, a ceramic based on sintered-quartz materials, an old high-tech material that allows creating objects which have glossy surfaces with lustre of various blue-green colours. This paper shows how faience had been produced and discusses some methods used for its analysis.
Keywords: Ceramics, Egyptian Faience, Ancient Technologies, Archaeometry, Scanning Electron Microscopy, Xeroradiography, Raman Spectroscopy, Synchrotron radiation micro-computed tomography
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