© Dominique BAGAULT / C2RMF / CNRS Photothèque
The Mehrgarh amulet (MR.85.03.00.01), the world’s oldest example of lost wax casting. This copper object from the ancient Chalcolithic period was discovered in the 1980s, on land settled 6,000 years ago. The secret of its manufacture has been revealed thanks to a new approach using UV/visible photoluminescence spectral imaging implemented by the Soleil synchrotron. This amulet is the oldest known object made by the lost wax process. This process uses a model sculpted in a material such as beeswax, which is then encased in clay. Wax melts at low temperatures so it runs out easily when the clay is heated. Molten metal is then poured into the empty clay mould, taking the place of the wax.
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