BROXTON, DAVID 1; PORTER, DOUGLAS 2; BASS, ANGELYN3; DOMINGUE, REBECCA4
1) Guest Scientist, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Computational Earth Science, firstname.lastname@example.org
2) Principal Investigator, University of Vermont, School of Engineering, email@example.com
3 Assistant Professor, University of New Mexico, Department of Anthropology, firstname.lastname@example.org
4 Student/Barrett Scholar, University of Vermont, School of Engineering, email@example.com
This paper explores the development of case hardened surfaces on tuff outcrops at Bandelier National Monument. In conducting the study, researchers have considered whether biofilm cover on canyon wall surfaces may improve bulk mechanical properties of the tuff that outweigh biodeteriorative effects and provide some degree of protection to archaeological resources carved in the rock. These are the initial results of a project that is ongoing. We hope that better understanding of case hardening / coating formation will lead to the development of low-impact interventions (e.g., application of a clay wash or other surface stabilizers that promote, or at least do not inhibit, colonization of the partially stabilized surface with biofilm constituents) for stabilization of rapidly eroding areas that currently threaten archaeological resources.
Keywords: biodeterioration, biofilm, cavate, tuff.