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Oversimplified, the longer something has been buried, the more damage should be found.The extent of damage can be measured with electron spin resonance (ESR), a technique that looks at the unpaired electrons often found when a stable bond is broken.Geological applications have included following the rise and fall of sea levels due to ice ages by dating shells of species known to live in shallow water, or looking at sediments buried by glaciers during ice ages.Applications to archaeology and paleoanthropology cover the time range from New World flint artifacts to teeth and bones from million-year old sites associated with human evolution.Absolute dating is the process of determining an age on a specified chronology in archaeology and geology.

In archaeology, absolute dating is usually based on the physical, chemical, and life properties of the materials of artifacts, buildings, or other items that have been modified by humans and by historical associations with materials with known dates (coins and written history).

My work focuses on the interface between chemistry and two other disciplines, geology and archaeology or paleoanthropology.

A relatively new way of determining the age of materials is to look at radiation damage caused by radioisotopes in the material itself and in its surroundings.

Eileen Alejos finished a thesis on the cooling of the Orca group on Hichinbrook Island in eastern Prince William Sound, and Kaitlyn Suarez worked on understanding radiation damage in Precambrian zircon from the same area. in The Encyclopedia of Scientific Dating Methods, Edited by W.

We took the summer (2015) off from Alaskan work, a first summer with no Alaska fieldwork in over a decade.

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