Obsidian hydration dating limitations

Once an archeologist can control for the geochemical signature of the obsidian (e.g., the "source") and temperature (usually approximated using an "effective hydration temperature" or EHT coefficient), he or she may be able to date the artifact using the obsidian hydration technique.

Water vapor pressure may also affect the rate of obsidian hydration.

as a result of radiocarbon dating of associated materials).

Obsidian is a volcanic glass that was used by prehistoric people as a raw material in the manufacture of stone tools such as projectile points, knives, or other cutting tools through knapping, or breaking off pieces in a controlled manner.

Obsidian is a volcanic glass that was sometimes used as a raw material in the manufacture of stone tools such as projectile points, knives, or other cutting tools through the process of flintknapping.

Obsidian obeys the property of mineral hydration, and absorbs water when exposed to air.

The technician measures the microscopic amount of water absorbed on freshly broken surfaces.

The principle behind obsidian hydration dating is simple–the longer the artifact surface has been exposed, the thicker the hydration band will be.

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