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Title: Reconstruction of 16th-17th century lead smelting processes on the basis of slag properties : a case study from Sławków, Poland
Authors: Warchulski, Rafał
Szczuka, Monika
Kupczak, Krzysztof
Keywords: slags; archaeometry; archaeology; lead; zinc; silver; smelting; reconstruction; melt modelling
Issue Date: 2020
Citation: "Minerals" (2020), Vol., iss. 11, art. no. 1039, s. 1-19
Abstract: The study focuses on the reconstruction of the technological process in the 16th–17th century lead smelter in Sławków based on chemical and petrographic analyzes of slags. There are three main types of material at the landfill: glassy, crystalline, and weathered. Glassy slags are made of amorphous phase in which crystals of pyroxene, willemite, olivine, wüstite, and lead oxide appear. Crystalline slags are composed of wollastonite, rankinite, melilite, anorthite, quartz, and Fe oxides. Weathered slags have a composition similar to glassy slags, but they also contain secondary phases: anglesite and cerussite. Chemical analyzes confirmed that the smelter used sulphide ores, which were roasted, and the main addition to the charge was quartz sand. The smelting process took place in a brick-built furnace, under reducing conditions, with varied oxygen fugacity ranging from WM to MH bu er. The slag characteristics show a knowledge of the workers in the field of smelting methods. The addition of SiO2 allowed for the binding of elements that could contaminate the obtained lead, and at the same time, the low melting point of the material (1150 C) and the melt viscosity (log = 1.34 for 1150 C) was maintained, enabling the e ective separation of liquid lead.
DOI: 10.3390/min10111039
ISSN: 2075-163X
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