Thursday, July 24th

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Research Centers & Labs

 

Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation (CMAC)

Over the past two decades Texas A&M University (TAMU), through its affiliation with the Institute of Nautical Archaeology (INA), the joint excavations of significant shipwrecks with INA, and the establishment of the Nautical Archaeology Program (NAP) in the Department of Anthropology, has become recognized as having one of the best nautical archaeology academic and research programs in the world. Over this same period, the conservation laboratories that are part of NAP have become very innovative and are acknowledged as being leaders in this field of conservation. In order to capitalize and build on this recognition, a Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation (CMAC) was created by the Texas A&M University Board of Regents in May 2005 as the best means by which the goals and mission of nautical archaeology at TAMU can be realized.

The mission of CMAC is simple. CMAC, as a research center at TAMU, and through its affiliation with INA and the Department of Oceanography, will continue to keep TAMU in the forefront of nautical, maritime, and underwater archaeology research. It will continue to build on our expertise in artifact conservation, advance underwater mapping technology, and build on the reputation it now has in these research areas. More simply put, CMAC's mission is to form research alliances such as the one we have with the INA in order to continue to be in the forefront of maritime archaeology research and be an active partner in one of the best academic programs in nautical archaeology in the world. To accomplish these ideals, CMAC has incorporated several varied laboratories specializing in various research areas and aspects of nautical archaeology. By concentrating on these objectives, CMAC will accomplish this multifaceted mission.

 

Archaeological Preservation Research Laboratory Webpage Wayne Smith
New and alternative methods for the conservation of organic material culture materials; the science of organo-silicone chemistry within the discipline of archaeology; the identification of applications in archaeology and industry; and interdisciplinary collaboration for the enrichment and development of advanced technologies.

Conservation Research Laboratory Webpage Donny L. Hamilton
An artifact conservation facility where historic and prehistoric artifacts made from wood, metal and other materials recovered from beneath the oceans and rivers of the world, as well as from archaeological sites of certain kind on land, are restored.

 

J. Richard Steffy Ship Reconstruction Laboratory Webpage Filipe Castro
The Ship Reconstruction Laboratory was created by J. Richard Steffy in 1976 and today is one of the laboratories of the Centre for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation of the Anthropology Department at Texas A&M University. Its mission is to acquire and disseminate knowledge about shipbuilding through time. As a classroom its main objective is to provide an effective learning environment. As research laboratory its objective is to facilitate investigation, seek public and private research funds, and recruit and retain quality students for its projects. As an outreach institution it aims at providing information, education, andguidance about the discipline of nautical archaeology and the importance of the world's submerged cultural heritage,perhaps more than ever threatened by treasure hunting.

 

New World Laboratory Webpage Kevin Crisman
The New World Nautical Archaeology Laboratory serves as the central clearinghouse for Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation and Nautical Archaeology Program research projects focused on the Western Hemisphere and European expansion. The lab provides working space, computer facilities, and resources for students and scholars researching shipwrecks and topics in the New World. The space is also used as the repository for Dr. Crisman's research on Lake Champlain, the Great Lakes, the Azores, Western River Steamboats, and the War of 1812.

 

Old World Laboratory Webpage Cemal Pulak
The Old World Laboratory focusses on research in the Mediterranean and surrounding seas, from the 14th-century BC Uluburun shipwreck to a 16th-century AD Ottoman wreck. Current research includes the study of Bynzantine shipwrecks from the former Theodosian harbor of Constaninople at Yenikapi, Istanbul by Dr. Pulak, the Roman navis lapidaria sunk off Kiziburun, Turkey by Dr. Carlson, and Dr. Wachsmann's Danaos Project, a deepwater survey of the eastern Mediterranean.

Ship Model Laboratory Webpage Glenn Grieco
The Ship Model Laboratory focuses on the construction of precise models derived from archaeological and historical research. Glenn Grieco, a graduate of the Nautical Archaeology Program at Texas A&M University, is a professional ship modeler. He has built numerous models for CMAC, including models of the 17th century French ship La Belle, the 19th century American brig Jefferson, and the western river steamboat Heroine. Grieco uses precise details derived from the archaeological remains of shipwrecks in the construction of his models.

 

Wilder 3-Dimensional Imaging Laboratory Webpage Wayne Smith
The Wilder 3-Dimensional Imaging Laboratory is a research laboratory within the Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation (CMAC), Department of Anthropology, College of Liberal Arts at Texas A&M University (TAMU). Research at the Wilder Lab facilities is directed at developing 3-Dimensional diagnostic tools to assist in the preservation of artifacts from terrestrial and maritime archaeological sites

Center for the Study of the First Americans (CSFA)

The Center for the Study of the First Americans explores the questions surrounding the peopling of the Americas. The Center pursues research, education, and public outreach.

Research: The Center develops new knowledge regarding PaleoAmerican origins, human dispersal, settlement, and cultural and biological development that occurred before 12,000 years ago.

Education: The Center trains students who will go on to continue First Americans research.

Outreach: The Center disseminates the results of academic research into the first Americans to the general public through our publications.

Institute of Nautical Archaeology (INA)

The Institute of Nautical Archaeology (INA) is an independent, international non-profit research organization dedicated to locating, excavating, preserving, and researching significant underwater and nautical archaeological sites. Founded over 50 years ago by Dr. George F. Bass, INA has been affiliated with Texas A&M University since 1976. While NAP/CMAC provides academic training for graduate students, many of these students gain vital and practical field experience on INA excavations. INA patrons and directors have contributed to the long-term financial support of NAP/CMAC through the endowment of numerous faculty chairs, fellowships, and student scholarships.

INA research projects bring to light those remnants of our collective past that speak most powerfully to us about who we are, what we have done, and what we are capable of. INA research associates and affiliated scholars uphold the highest scientific, academic and ethical standards, working to make seafaring history accessible to the public through museum exhibitions, public lectures, scholarly conferences, and publications including our newsletter, The INA Quarterly and our more comprehensive yearly review, The INA Annual.

INA’s office in the Mediterranean is the Bodrum Research Center (BRC) in southwestern Turkey, where INA staff work year-round to conserve and restore artifacts raised during INA shipwreck surveys and excavations. The BRC is a comprehensive facility with offices, dormitory rooms, the Tooze Library and the Nixon Griffis Conservation Laboratory, including the Hethea Nye Wood Conservation Facility. Along with INA’s research vessels, the resources of the BRC support the work of scholars who conduct archaeological surveys leading to the discovery of shipwrecks and to study the significance of their findings.

Anthropology Research Collections

Ceramics Project

The Anthropology Research Collections (ARC) at Texas A&M University support and complement the Department of Anthropology's goals of education and research focused on understanding the human experience across space and time. ARC serves this mission primarily through maintaining, and making available to researchers, anthropological materials collected during research projects led by TAMU Anthropology faculty and students. The driving force of our mission is the recognition that cultural materials -- as manifestations of the practical and symbolic lives of human groups -- represent tangible and irreplaceable sources of information for the study of human behavior.

Other Research Laboratories

Archaeobotany Laboratory   Vaughn Bryant
Analysis and study of prehistoric plant materials recovered from archaeological sites and reconstruction of prehistoric diet patterns in many areas of the world.

 

Biological Anthropology Laboratory   Lori Wright
Prehistoric human skeletal biology and osteology, paleoanthropology, and primate behavior. Facilities include an excellent and expanding collection of human skeletal remains, australopithecine casts, hominine fossil casts, and primate skeletal remains. Teaching facilities include a computerized laboratory.

 

Ceramic Laboratory Webpage Suzanne Eckert
Complete facilities for both technological and decorative study of prehistoric and historic pottery through attribute analysis, petrographic analysis, and chemical compositional characterization. Research programs tend to focus on reconstructing ceramic production organization and economic systems in the American Southwest, Texas, and the South Pacific.

Glaze Ware

Palynology Laboratory   Vaughn Bryant
Reconstruction of paleoenvironments; determination of the cultural use of plants; identification of the cultural use of artifacts, containers, and structures; and reconstruction of the contents of prehistoric diets.

 

Zooarchaeology Laboratory    
Study and analysis of faunal remains associated with archaeological sites is undertaken primarily to help in understanding past people's adaptations to the many environments they have occupied and the lifeways they have followed.