INAA has become a mainstay of archaeological materials science research, contributing to the characterization of many tens of thousands of artifacts in archaeological studies spanning the globe. The sensitivity, precision, and multielement capability of INAA make this method particularly useful in characterizing complex materials such as ceramics, in the analysis of materials with low element concentrations, or where the amount of material available for analysis is limited. Although provenance studies remain the most popular application of this method, the high-quality compositional data generated by INAA can be employed to address a broad range of economic, technological, and ecological issues, whose limits are set only by our ability to phrase the research questions.
See also: Archaeometry; Chemical Analysis Techniques; Metals: Chemical Analysis; Pottery Analysis: Chemical; Trace Element Analysis; Vitreous Materials Analysis.
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