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Chinese, Japanese archaeologists reconstruct millennia-old iron-smelting techniques


Chinese and Japanese archaeologists have successfully reconstructed the iron-smelting techniques that date back about two millennia.

Chinese, Japanese archaeologists reconstruct millennia-old iron-smelting techniques
Credit: Sichuan Observer


Based on the archaeological discovery of the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220), archaeologists built a shaft furnace and successfully smelted pig iron in an experiment conducted over the weekend in the city of Qionglai in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

Chinese, Japanese archaeologists reconstruct millennia-old iron-smelting techniques
Credit: Sichuan Observer
The experiment provides data and a successful case for the study of iron-smelting techniques in the Han Dynasty, according to the archaeologists.

Chinese, Japanese archaeologists reconstruct millennia-old iron-smelting techniques
Credit: Sichuan Observer


The experiment was jointly sponsored by Sichuan University, the institutes of cultural relics and archaeology in Chengdu and Sichuan, Japan's Ehime University and the municipal government of Qionglai.

Chinese, Japanese archaeologists reconstruct millennia-old iron-smelting techniques
Credit: Sichuan Observer
Iron is regarded as one of the most important materials of Chinese civilization. Ancient Chinese were able to refine liquid iron as early as the Spring and Autumn Period (770 BC-476 BC).

Chinese, Japanese archaeologists reconstruct millennia-old iron-smelting techniques
Credit: Sichuan Observer
Li Yingfu, vice dean of the College of History and Culture of Sichuan University, said the iron-smelting techniques in the Han Dynasty not only greatly promoted production in ancient China, but also contributed to the development of metallurgy in Southeast Asia and beyond.

Source: Xinhua News Agency [November 19, 2019]

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