HHpXRF study of recent zinc and lead pollution on lava stepping stones from Pompeii: tourist footfall, tyre dust and leaded petrol

M. Worthing, L. Bosworth, M. Papandrea, E. Poehler, S. Ellis, R. Laurence*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
3 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

A helium‐enabled Niton X‐ray analyser (HHpXRF) study of 296 lava stepping stones from ancient Pompeii showed that their surfaces were contaminated with superficial deposits of Zn and Pb. Recent research has shown that concentrations of these elements are highest in urban areas, where they were attributed to tyre dust and leaded petrol, respectively. The distribution of these elements on the stepping stones is represented on maps of the site. Zn pollution is most abundant in areas visited by tourists and is attributed mostly to wear from their rubber‐soled footwear. Pb pollution is attributed to the movement of onsite vehicles using leaded petrol.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1042-1066
Number of pages25
JournalArchaeometry
Volume62
Issue number5
Early online date16 Apr 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2020. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

Keywords

  • HHpXRF
  • Pompeii
  • geochemistry
  • leaded petrol
  • stepping stones
  • tourist footfall
  • zinc and lead pollution

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