On Thursday, October 17, Ruth Ann Armitage, a professor in the Department of Chemistry at Eastern Michigan University, will speak in the Whitney Auditorium (Room 1315, School of Education Building) at noon as part of the UMMAA Brown Bag Lecture Series.

Armitage will discuss plasma chemical oxidation (PCO), a method for preparing samples that’s especially useful for very small or fragile artifacts. PCO can be used to extract organic carbon from inorganic carbon matrices in order to date rock paintings and fragile organic materials without destroying them, allowing for repeated dating of the same sample with accelerator mass spectrometry. Chemical analysis with ambient ionization mass spectrometry and other methods can provide further information about such materials.    

The Museum’s Brown Bag Lecture Series is free and open to the public.