In addition to the 2G rule for adults and young people aged 16 and over and the 3G rule for children and young people under 16, further protective and hygiene measures apply to the visit. To the overview...


Archaeometallurgy – a specialist field of archaeometry – applies natural scientific methods to explore issues surrounding the mining and spread of metals during (pre-)historic times. This work is based on close collaborations between the  material science and research laboratories of the Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum and external partner labs.

Archaeometallurgy is the study of every facet of the metallurgical chain of processes relating to the production of metals from ore, and how these are subsequently processed to make artefacts. Archaeometallurgy has become an established specialist field of archaeometry through the expertise of geo-scientists, materials scientists, chemists, physicists and engineers, and is now reshaping the focus of research performed within the humanity disciplines.

The archaeometallurgical investigations conducted by the Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum encompass geophysical prospection projects, experimental methods as well as analytical and materials science-based lab processes. Archaeometallurgy uses geophysical prospecting to examine the geology of mineral repositories, with the aim of documenting metal production areas based on deposits recorded there. Experimental methods are employed to examine the interactions of metallurgical, but also atmospheric processes, such as corrosion, on chemical and physical characteristics. All archaeometallurgical studies are based on analytics performed using cutting-edge methods.

Archaeometallurgy is certainly not limited to purely applying natural science methods to examine archaeological questions. Instead, it also focuses on the development of new methods of exploration, because the sample material differs significantly from those found in the specialist areas of natural science. One example of this is high-precision analysis of elements and isotopes, which must be adapted to the considerably more complex nature of the metallurgical material spectrum.

The Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum has maintained an archaeometallurgy research department, established in 1990 with the financial assistance of the Volkswagen Foundation.

The research area Archaeometallurgy is located in the Haus der Archäologien

  • WESTNER, K. J./GASSMANN, G./KLEIN, S.: Primary metal extraction or secondary metal production from resmelting? A case study on samples from two excavated sites in Kosovo, in: Herm,C./Merkel, S./Schreiner, M./Wiesinger (Hrsg.), Metalla, Sonderheft 9, 2019, S. 200 – 203.
  • NICKLISCH, N./KNIPPER, C./NEHLICH, O./HELD, P./ROSSBACH/A., KLEIN/S., SCHWAB/R./HÄGER, T./WOLF, M., ENZMANN/F., BIRKENHAGEN, B./ALT,K.W.: A Roman-period dental filling made of a hard tissue compound?, in: Archäologisches Korrespondenzblatt 49, 2019, S. 371 – 391.
  • BIRCH, T., WESTNER, K., KEMMERS, F., KLEIN, S., HÖFER, H., SEITZ, H.-M: Retracing Magna Graecia‘s Silver: Coupling lead isotopes with a multi-standard trace element procedure. Archaeometry, 2019, 28 S.,
  • ROSE, TH./HANNING, E./KLEIN, S.: Verhüttungsexperimente mit Chalkopyrit-Erz nach Vorbildern aus dem bronzezeitlichen Ostalpenraum und Nepal, in: Experimentelle Archäologie in Europa 18, 2019, S. 47 – 60. DOI 10.23689/fidgeo-3706
  • ROSE, TH./HANNING, E./KLEIN, S.: DBM @ RGZM: Experimente zur prähistorischen Kupferverhüttung im Labor für Experimentelle Archäologie, in: as. – archäologie schweiz 1, 2019, S. 44 – 45.
  • RODLER, A./KLEIN, S./ARTIOLI, G./BRONS, C.: Probing the provenance of archaeological glaze colorants: Polychrome faunal reliefs of the Ishtar Gate and the Processional Way of Babylon, in: Archaeometry 61, Heft 4, 2019, S. 837– 855. DOI: 10.1111/arcm.12455
  • ROSE, TH./TÉLOUK, PH./KLEIN, S./MARSCHALL, H.: Questioning Fe isotopes as provenance tool: insights from bog iron ores and alternative applications for archaeometry, in: Journal of Archaeological Science 101, 2019, S. 52 – 62. DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2018.11.005
  • ASHKENAZI, D./MISGAV, I./ISSACHAR, R./KLEIN, S./CVIKEL, D.: New insights into brass nails from the 19th-century Akko Tower Wreck (Israel): Metallurgical characterization, in: Journal of Alloys and Compounds 771, 2019, S. 614 – 628.
  • GUSSONEA, N./GREIFELT, T.: Incorporation of Ca isotopes in carapaxes of marine ostracods, in: Chemical Geology 510, 2019, S. 130 – 139.
  • HSU, Y.-K/SABATINI, B.: A geochemical characterization of lead ores in China: an isotope database for provenancing archaeological materials, in: PLoS ONE 14, Heft 4, 2019. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0215973
  • YALÇIN, Ü./YALÇIN, H. G.: Hükümdar, Dini Lider, Zanaatkar? Alacahöyük Kral Mezarları’na Yeni Bir Bakış, Istanbul 2019.
  • YALÇIN, Ü./YALÇIN, H.G./EKMEN, H./VE IPEK, Ö.: Derekutuğun Eski Maden İşletmeleri ve Madenci Yerleşimi 2017 Çalışmaları, 40. Kazı Sonuçları Toplantısı 3, 2019,S. 557 – 576.
  • YALÇIN, Ü./YALÇIN, H. G.: Derekutuğun Tarihöncesi Madenci Çıraları, Süleyman Demirel Üniversitesi Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi 47, Heft 2, S. 116 – 129.
  • YALÇIN, H.G./YALÇIN, Ü.: Derekutuğun Madenci Yerleşmesi Kalkolitik Çağ Çanak Çömleği, in: Çaylı, P./ Demirtaş, I./Eser, B. (Hrsg.): Half a Century Dedicated to Archaeology. A Festschrift in Honor of Sevil Gülçur, Ankara 2019, S. 263 – 280.
  • SIR GAVAZ, Ö./YALÇIN, Ü.: Alacahöyük İTÇ Zanaatkarları ve Arinna’lı Ustalar, 9. Uluslararası Hititoloji Kongresi Bildirileri Kitabı, Çorum 2019, S. 927 – 952.
  • Cohen, M. u. a.: Copper Alloy coins from the Byzantine-Period Ma’agan Mikhael B Shipwreck, Israel: Metallurgical Characterization, in: Metallography, Microstructures, and Analysis 5, 2018. DOI 10.1007/s13632-018-0476-8
  • Folkers, A. u. a.: ‘Römisch-germanische Kontakte an der Huntemündung? Fragestellungen, Methoden und erste Ergebnisse aktueller interdisziplinärer Forschungen am Ufermarkt von Elsfleth-Hogenkamp und seinem Umfeld.’, in: Burmeister, S. (Hrsg.): Phantom Germanicus, Osnabrücker Forschungen zu Altertum und Antike-Rezeption, 2018, S. 335-360.
  • Güder, Ü./Gatess, M.-H./Yalçın, Ü. (2017): Early Iron from Kinet Höyük, Turkey: Analysisi of Objects an Evidence for Smithing, in: Metalla 23.2, 2017, S. 51-66 [peer-reviewed].
  • Hauptmann, A. u. a.: Types of Gold, Types of Silver: The Composition of Precious Metal Artifacts Found in the Royal Tombs of Ur, Mesopotamia, in: Zeitschrift für Assyriologie und vorderasiatische Archäologie 108 (1), 2018: S. 100-131 [peer-reviewed].
  • Jansen, M., Hauptmann, A. & Klein, S.,2018, Copper and lead isotope characterization of Late Bronze Age copper ingots in the Eastern Mediterranean: results from Gelidonya, Gournia, Enkomi and Mathiati. In: F. LoSchiavo and A. Giumlia-Mair (eds), Festschrift für Robert Maddin and Vassos Karageorghis
  • Jansen, M./Klein, S./Hauptmann, A.: Zur Herkunft des Goldes aus den Königsgräbern von Ur, in: Yalcin, Ü. (Hrsg.): Anatolian Metal VIII – Eliten – Handwerk – Prestigegüter, Bochum 2018 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 39), S. 123-137.
  • Merkel, S.: ’Archaeometallurgical Investigations of a Viking Brass Ingot Hoard from the Hedeby Harbor in Northern Germany’, in: Journal of Archaeological Science Reports 20, 2018, S. 293-302.
  • Merkel, S.: ‘Archaeometallurgical Analysis of Metalworking Debris from a Germanic Goldsmithing Workshop at Elsftelth-Hogenkamp, 2nd-3rd Century AD.’, in: Glaser, L. (Hrsg.): Archäometrie und Denkmalpflege 2018, 2018, S. 95-98.
  • Yalçın, Ü. (2018): Anatolian Metal VIII, Eliten – Handwerk – Prestigegüter, Bochum 2018 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 39).
  • Yalçın, Ü. u. a.: Derekutuğun Eski Maden İşletmeleri ve Madenci Yerleşmesi 2016 Çalışmaları, 39. Kazı Sonuçları Toplantısı, 3. Cilt, Ankara 2018, S. 573-596.
  • Yalçın, Ü./Yalçın, G.: Könige, Priester und Handwerker? Neues über frühbronzezeitliche Fürstengräber von Alacahöyük, in: Yalçın, Ü. (Hrsg.): Anatolian Metal VIII, Bochum 2018 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 39), S. 91-122.
  • Ashkenazi, D. u. a.: Decorated floor tiles from the 19th-century Akko Tower shipwreck (Israel): Analysis of pigments and glaze, in: Dyes and Pigments 147, 2017, S. 160-174.
  • Cvickel, D. u. a.: Flintlock brass fittings from the 19th-century Akko 1 shipwreck, Israel, in: Arms & Armour, 2017. Unter: DOI:10.1080/17416124.2017.1388575
  • Cvikel, D. u. a.: Metallurgical characterization of brass sheet from the19th-century Akko Tower Wreck (Israel), in: Materials Characterization 131, 2017, S. 175-187.
  • Güder, Ü./Yavaş, A./Yalçın, Ü.: Anadolu Selçuklu Dönemi Demir Aletlerinin Üretim Yöntemleri, in: Turkish Studies 10/9, S. 193-212.
  • Hauptmann, A.: Copper and Ores from Elsewhere and the Question of Metallurgy at Maadi, in: Bajeot, J. (Hrsg.): Predynastic Maadi in Context. The Research of the Italian Expedition Revisited (1977-1986), Studi di Preistoria Orientale 4, 2017, S. 145-152.
  • Jansen, M., Hauptmann, A., Klein, S., Seitz, H.-M.: The potential of stable Cu isotopes for the identification of Bronze Age ore mineral sources from Cyprus and Faynan: results from Uluburun and Khirbat Hamra Ifdan, in: Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 2017. DOI:10.1007/s12520-017-0465-x
  • Jansen, M. u. a.: Copper from Cyprus, but which ores were used? The oxhide ingots of Uluburun in comparison to ores on the basis of Cu Isotopy. Translation of: Jansen, M. u. a.: Kupfer aus Zypern, und welche Erze? Die Ochsenhautbarren von Uluburun im Vergleich zu Erzen auf Zypern auf Basis der Cu-Isotopie, in: Schlütter, F./Greiff, S./Prange, M.: Archäometrie und Denkmalpflege 2012. Jahrestagung an der Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, 28. – 31. März 2012, Bochum 2012, Metalla Sonderheft 5, 2017, S. 118-121.
  • Klein, S. u. a.: Metallkundliche und analytische Untersuchungen an den im Deposito Archeologico der Soprintendenza Archeologica di Pompei aufbewahrten Metallgefäßen, in: Germania, 2017, S. 161-336.
  • Hauptmann, Andreas/Klein, Sabine: Golden artifacts from the Royal Tombs of Ur, Mesopotamia, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 84-88.
  • Hauptmann, Andreas/Klein, Sabine: The Royal Tombs of Ur, Mesopotamia: New investigations, new results from the in-vestigation of metal artifacts and other archaeological finds, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 77-83.
  • Hauptmann, Andreas/Schneider, Gabi/Bartels, Christoph: The shipwreck of Bom Jesus, AD 1533: Fugger copper in Namibia, in: Journal of African Archaeology 14, Heft 2, 2016, S. 1-27.
  • Hauptmann, Andreas u. a.: Composition and provenance of pigments from the Early Dynastic Royal Tombs of Ur, Mesopo-tamia, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 41-74.
  • Jansen, Moritz/Hauptmann, Andreas/Klein, Sabine: Where does the gold from the cemetery of Ur come from? Provenan-cing gold sources using analytical methods, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 98-106.
  • Jansen, Moritz u. a.: Platinum Group Placer Minerals in Ancient Gold Artifacts – Geochemistry and Osmium Isotopy of Inclusions in Early Bronze Age Gold from Ur/Mesopotamia, in: Journal of Archaeological Science 68, 2016, S. 12-23.
  • Klein, Sabine/Hauptmann, Andreas: Ur, Mesopotamia: The lead metal from Pit X, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 136-140.
  • Klein, Sabine/La Niece, Susan/Hauptmann, Andreas: Objects from the Ur-collection at the British Museum, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 89-97.
  • Körlin, Gabriele u. a. (Hrsg.): From Bright Ores to Shiny Metals. Festschrift for Andreas Hauptmann on the Occasion of 40 Years Research in Archaeometallurgy and Archaeometry, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 29).
  • Merkel, Stephen: Carolingian and Ottonian Brass Production in Westphalia: Evidence from the Crucibles of Dortmund and Soest, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 21-39.
  • Merkel, Stephen: Silver and the Silver Economy at Hedeby, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 34).
  • Merkel, Stephen u. a.: Silver production at al-Radrad: archaeometallurgical analysis of ore, slag and technical cera-mics from early medieval Yemen, in: Arabian archaeology and epigraphy 27, 2016, S. 107-126.
  • Salzmann, Eveline/Klein, Sabine/Hauptmann, Andreas:Analytical investigations on silver, copper and the earliest tin bronzes from Ur, in: Metalla 22.1, 2016, S. 141-145.
  • Yalçın, Hatice Gönül: Neolithische Stempel aus Anatolien, in: Yalçın, Ünsal (Hrsg.): Anatolian Metal VII. Anatolien und seine Nachbarn vor 10.000 Jahren, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 31), S. 153-165.
  • Yalçın, Hatice Gönül/Yalçın, Ünsal/Schoch, Chiara: Die Gefäß-keramik aus dem Kupferbergbau von Derekutuğun, in: Yalçın, Ünsal/Ipek, Önder (Hrsg.): Prähistorische Kupfergewinnung in Derekutuğun, Anatolien, Bd. 1: Montanarchäologische Forschungen in den Jahren 2009-2011, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 30), S. 55-68, Tf. 111-194.
  • Yalçın, Ünsal: Beton vor 10.000 Jahren? Zu den neolithischen Fußböden von Aşıklı Höyük und Musular, Kappadokien, in: Yalçın, Ünsal (Hrsg.): Anatolian Metal VII. Anatolien und seine Nachbarn vor 10.000 Jahren, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 31), S. 99-114.
  • Yalçın, Ünsal: Zinn für die Königin. Ein Barrenfragment aus Alacahöyük und seine Deutung, in: Körlin, Gabriele u. a. (Hrsg.): From Bright Ores to Shiny Metals. Festschrift for Andreas Hauptmann on the Occasion of 40 Years Research in Archaeometallurgy and Archaeometry, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 29), S. 69-74.
  • Yalçın, Ünsal (Hrsg.): Anatolian Metal VII. Anatolien und seine Nachbarn vor 10.000 Jahren, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 31).
  • Yalçın, Ünsal (Hrsg.): Prähistorische Kupfergewinnung in Derekutuğun, Anatolien, Bd. 1: Montanarchäologische Forschungen in den Jahren 2009 - 2011, Bochum 2016 (= Der Anschnitt, Beiheft 30).

The research area Archaeometallurgy cooperates with the following institutions, among others:

Cooperation and research partners

  • British Museum, London
  • Çorum Museum
  • École Normale Supérieure de Lyon
  • Deutsches Archäologisches Institut
  • Institute for Aegean Prehistory, Philadelphia
  • Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies, Haifa
  • LWL-Archäologie für Westfalen
  • Niedersächsisches Institut für Historische Küstenforschung
  • Römisch-Germanische Kommission des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts, 
    Frankfurt a. M.

University cooperations

  • Bülent Ecevit Üniversitesi Zonguldak
  • Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart Üniversitesi
  • Goethe-Universität Frankfurt a. M.
  • Hitit Üniversitesi Çorum
  • Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
  • Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  • Université de Toulouse - Jean Jaurès
  • University of Oxford, Institute of Archaeology
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Museum for Archaeology and Anthropology, Philadelphia (Penn Museum)
  • University of Warsaw, Department of Chemistry
  • University of Warsaw, Institute of Archaeology
  • Conference series Archaeometallurgy in Europe, Standing Committee
  • Deutsches Archäologisches Institut
  • Deutsche Mineralogische Gesellschaft
  • Gesellschaft für Naturwissenschaftliche Archäologie – Archaeometrie
  • Historical Metallurgy Society
  • Kommission für Archäologie Außereuropäischer Kulturen des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts
  • Vereinigung der Freunde von Kunst und Kultur im Bergbau e. V.

Latest news
Research Projects
Developing young researchers
Good research practice
Ombudsperson System