As a PhD student at the University of Liverpool, I attended EXARC 2017 in Leiden where I presented a poster on my current experimental research. The project aims to determine the mould materials used for casting Roman silver flans during the late third century. Another aim of the experimental investigation to establish the mechanisms behind direct enrichment and how this surface enrichment process is impacted by the mould material used. Finally, the research will try to reconstruct the process used to artificially silver, quaternary alloys introduced around the sole reign of Valerian. The experimental blanks created will then be analysed using O.M and SEM-EDS and compared against the ancient examples. The overarching goal is to better understand the manufacturing methods employed at Roman mints in the creation of their silver denominations.
Attendance at the conference led to the realisation that I would like to pursue experimental archaeology as a career. The conference really opened my eyes to the scope of projects that are currently in progress and how accessible this form of research is to a wider audience. Another inspiring aspect for me was the projects, which are applying knowledge gained through studying ancient cultures to help societies today. I believe experimental archaeology as a profession has a lot to offer the wider society and is personally something that I feel has a lot to offer modern communities.