Jamshedpur : The third day programme of the School on Characterisation and Conservation of Archaeological Objects held at CSIR-NML witnessed class room lectures, display and demonstration of different techniques etc., at CSIR-National Metallurgical Laboratory, Jamshedpur.
Dr. S. Maiti, former Director (Science), Archaeological Survey of India, Dehradun delivered a very interesting talk on Conservation of Wood and Textile objects of archaeological importance. He focused his presentation with reference to “Wooden Structures of Goa Museum”. He dealt with different aspect of conservation techniques including pest control and application of verities of preservative chemicals.
He presented on cases of the textile object of Hydrabad Salurjung Museum and focused on several factors causing damage to the textile collection of the museum.
Prof. Vibha Tripathi, BHU, Varanasi deliberated on Beginning and Development of Iron Technology in India. She traced the history of iron making and its gradual development in India and attempted to correlate with the historical events.
She linked the value of iron and steel with growth of civilization. She mentioned Indian iron technology should have been in the line of development in the ancient iron making as used to be practiced by Indian rural tribal. Country like China and Japan are achieving the best quality of iron following the same routes.
Prof. S. Jaikishan from Hyderabad presented the case studies on The Deccan Cannons – The Neglected Beauties. He said in the beginning there was a native forge welding technique adopted in cannon making. In the late medieval period Babur brought the Mughal Turkish cannons to India which were a large cast sections screwed together.
Akber introduced mould system in cannon making because of the failure of the Turkish screw system. Late in 18th century the technology of the Maritz System was adopted in cannon making. It was cast into a solid piece with wart iron and the bore was drilled out in drilling section.
The largest supplying centers of saltpeter in the world during 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries in India were Patna, Agra, Ajmer and Deccan.
Indians were foolish to allow trade to be controlled by European powers (Dutch, Portuguese, English and French) Indian gunpowder for European colonization. American wars were fought with Indian gunpowder. Composite cannons and multi metal cannons in Golkonda made by late Qutb Shahi kings and multi barrel cannon of Rajputs kings was the innovative technology. The multi barrel cannons work like a modern machine gun.
They are subjected to damage and defacement. Most of the bronze and iron cannons are cut and stolen and sold in the scrap shops due to metal cost.
During afternoon the participants were given hand on training on laboratory equipment and on different NDT and Archaeo-metallurgical techniques. The participants were thrilled to see different types of melting, casting, and forging facilities at NML.