Saturday, 14 November 2015

Neutron beam aimed at 'un-burning' bone

close-up photo of bone fragmentsResearchers from Portugal are using a neutron beam to study the molecular changes that occur when bones burn.
The experiments, under way at the Isis facility in Oxfordshire, are aimed at solving a problem for archaeologists and forensic scientists.
When bones get hot they shrivel, making the age, sex and size of their original owner much more difficult to establish.
By bouncing neutrons off human bone samples, burned and unburned, the team hopes to get a fix on those changes.
"The problem... is that when a skeleton is subjected to high temperatures, like in a plane crash or a bushfire, the bones are altered by the fire. One of those alterations is a change in dimensions," said David Gonçalves, a bone specialist from the University of Coimbra.READ MORE-BBC LINK-http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-34779136

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