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Prof Thilo Rehren
Director - UCL Qatar
Tel: +974 4457 8683
As Director of UCL Qatar, Professor Thilo Rehren has played a crucial role in the creation and implementation of the campus, and now steers its academic and administrative team towards a long-term presence in Qatar defined by academic excellence. In addition to his role as Director of UCL Qatar, he maintains close links with the UCL Institute of Archaeology in London, where he continues to supervise PhD students and collaborate in research projects. He also contributes to teaching in UCL Qatar’s postgraduate degree programmes.
Professor Rehren continues his own research across a wide range of regions, periods and materials, with a particular focus on the reconstruction of past processes for the production of metals and glass. In ancient glass, he has worked extensively on Late Bronze Age glass making in Egypt, including providing the first demonstrable proof of actual glass-making during this period. He has studied Hellenistic and Roman to Late Antique glass chemistry, and investigated the relationship between glass and glaze compositions in early Islamic Central Asia. In archaeometallurgy, he initially focused on the role that crucibles played in producing and manipulating metals and alloys. Further original research includes Islamic crucible steel production in Central Asia and its comparison to the early modern crucible steel production in India and Sri Lanka; South American silver production spanning some 2,000 years; Islamic gold production and ore refining in North Africa; medieval lead smelting and the role of lead in silver cupellation from the Early Bronze Age to the early Modern Period; Neolithic to Bronze Age copper smelting in the Balkans; the production of Roman and medieval brass and zinc; and the earliest industrial production of pure platinum for coinage in early 19th century Russia.
Professor Rehren holds a PhD in Volcanology from Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg. He has studied Greek and Latin and, prior to his PhD, studied earth sciences, specialising in economic geology. He spent ten years as curator of geological collections and research scientist at the Deutsches Bergbau-Museum in Bochum; during this time he obtained a higher doctorate in materials science/archaeometallurgy. In 1999 he commenced his position as chair in Archaeological Materials and Technologies at the UCL Institute of Archaeology, developing it into one of the leading centres for archaeological materials research. During this period, he also contributed to the Institute’s collaboration with the University of Science and Technology Beijing and with Peking University in Beijing, as Director of the International Centre for Chinese Heritage and Archaeology.
Rehren, Th. and Pusch, E.B. 2012: Alloying and resource management in New Kingdom Egypt: the bronze industry at Qantir – Pi-Ramesse and its relationship to Egyptian copper sources. In: V. Kassianidou and G. Papasavvas (eds), Eastern Mediterranean Metallurgy and Metalwork in the Second Millennium BC, 215-221. Oxbow Books, ISBN 978-1-84217-453-1.
Rehren, Th. and Yin, M. 2012: Melt formation in lime-rich proto-porcelain glazes. Journal of Archaeological Science 39, 2969-2983.
Rehren, Th., Boscher, L. and Pernicka, E. 2012: Large scale smelting of speiss and arsenical copper at Early Bronze Age Arisman, Iran. Journal of Archaeological Science 39, 1717-1727.
Alipour, R., Gleba, M. and Rehren, Th. 2011: Textile templates for ceramic crucibles in early Islamic Akhsiket, Uzbekistan. Archaeological Textiles Newsletter 53, 15-27
Gill, M. and Rehren, Th. 2011: Material characterisation of ceramic tile mosaic from two 17th century Islamic monuments in northern India. Archaeometry 53, 22-36.
Nixon, S., Rehren, Th. and Guerra, M.F. 2011. New light on the early Islamic West African gold trade: coin moulds from Tadmekka, Mali. Antiquity 85, 1353-1368.
Park, J-S. and Rehren, Th. 2011: Large-scale 2nd to 3rd century AD bloomery iron smelting in Korea. Journal of Archaeological Science 38, 1180-1190.
Severin, T., Rehren, Th. and Schleicher, H., 2011: Early metal smelting in Aksum, Ethiopia: copper or iron? European Journal of Mineralogy 23, 981-992.
Smirniou, M. and Rehren, Th. 2011: Direct evidence of primary glass production in Late Bronze Age Amarna, Egypt. Archaeometry 53, 58-80.
Yin, M., Rehren, Th. and Zheng, JM. 2011: The earliest high-fired glazed ceramics in China: the composition of the proto-porcelain from Zhejiang during the Shang and Zhou periods (c. 1700 – 221 BC). Journal of Archaeological Science 38, 2352-2365.
Kearns, Th., Martínon-Torres, M. and Rehren, Th., 2010: Metal to mould: alloy identification in experimental casting moulds using XRF. Historical Metallurgy 44, 48-58.
Radivojevic, M., Rehren, Th., Pernicka, E., Sljivar, D., Brauns, M. and Boric, D., 2010, On the origins of extractive metallurgy: new evidence from Europe. Journal of Archaeological Science 37, 2775-2787.
Rehren, Th. and Cholakova, A., 2010, The early Byzantine HIMT glass from Dichin, Northern Bulgaria. Interdisciplinary Studies 22/23, 81-96.
Rehren, Th., Osorio, A. and Anarbaev, A. 2010, Some notes on early Islamic glass in eastern Uzbekistan. In: B. Zorn and A. Hilgner (eds), Glass along the Silk Road from 200 BC to AD 1000. RGZM, Mainz, 93-103.
Rehren, Th., Marii, F., Schibille, N., Swann, C. and Stanford, L., 2010: Glass supply and circulation in early Byzantine southern Jordan. In: J. Drauschke and D. Keller, eds., Glass in Byzantium – production, usage, analyses. RGZM, Mainz, 65-81.
Thornton, C.P., Golden, J., Killick, D., Pigott, V.C., Rehren, Th. and Roberts, B.W. 2010, A Chalcolithic Error: Rebuttal to Amzallag 2009. American Journal of Archaeology 114, 305-315.
CHEN Kunlong, Rehren, Th., MEI Jianjun and ZHAO Congcang (2009): Special alloys from remote frontiers of the Shang Kingdom: scientific study of the Hanzhong Bronzes from southwest Shaanxi, China. Journal of Archaeological Science 36, 2108-2118.
Marii, F. and Rehren, Th. (2009): Archaeological coloured glass cakes and tesserae from the Petra Church. In: Annales du 17e Congres de l’Association Internationale pour l’Histoire du Verre, Antwerp, 295-300.
Mei, Jianjun and Rehren, Th (eds) (2009): Metallurgy and Civilisation: Eurasia and Beyond. London, Archetype.
Schultze, C., Stanish, C., Scott, D., Rehren, Th., Kuehner, S. and Feathers, J. (2009): Direct evidence of 1,900 years of indigenous silver production in the Lake Titicaca Basin of Southern Peru. PNAS 106, 17280-17283.
Shortland, A., Freestone, I. & Rehren, Th. (eds) (2009): From Mine to Microscope – Advances in the Study of Ancient Technology. Oxford, ISBN
Thornton, Chr. and Rehren, Th. (2009): A truly refractory crucible from fourth millennium Tepe Hissar, northeast Iran. Journal of Archaeological Science 36, 2700-2712.
Thornton, Ch., Rehren, Th. and Pigott, V. (2009): The intentional production of iron arsenide (speiss) in Early Bronze Age Iran. Journal of Archaeological Science 36, 308-316.
Martinón-Torres, M. and Rehren, Th., Eds, (2008): Archaeology, History and Science – Integrating Approaches to Ancient Materials, Walnut Creek, Left Coast Press.
Rehren, Th. (2008): A review of factors affecting the composition of early Egyptian glasses and faience: alkali and alkali earth oxides. Journal of Archaeological Science 35, 1345-1354.
Rehren, Th. and Pernicka, E. (2008): Coins, artefacts and isotopes: archaeometallurgy and Archaeometry. Archaeometry 50, 232-248.
Rehren, Th. & Pusch, E. (2008): Crushed rock and molten salt? Some aspects of the primary glass production at Qantir / Pi-Ramesse. In: C. Jackson & E. Wager (eds), Vitreous Materials in the Late Bronze Age Aegean: A Window to the East Mediterranean World. Oxbow Books, Oxford, 14-33.
Schibille, N., Marii, F. and Rehren, Th. (2008): Characterization and provenance of Late Antique window glass from the Petra Church in Jordan. Archaeometry 50, 627-642.
Tanimoto, S. and Rehren, Th. (2008): Interactions between silicate and salt melts in LBA glassmaking. Journal of Archaeological Science 35, 2566-2573.
Bayley, J. & Rehren, Th. (2007): Towards a functional and typological classification of crucibles. In: S. LaNiece, D. Hook and P. Craddock (eds), Metals and Mines – Studies in Archaeometallurgy. Archetype, London, 46-55.
Pusch, E. & Rehren, Th. (2007): Rubinglas für den Pharao. Forschungen in der Ramses-Stadt, Band 6. Gerstenberg Verlag, Hildesheim. Vol 1, Text, Vol. 2, Katalog.
Veldhuijzen, A.H. & Rehren, Th. (2007): Slags and the city: early iron production at Tell Hammeh, Jordan, and Tel Beth-Shemesh, Israel. In: S. LaNiece, D. Hook and P. Craddock (eds), Metals and Mines – Studies in Archaeometallurgy. Archetype, London, 189-201.
Lankton, J., Ige, A. & Rehren, Th. (2006): Early primary glass production in southern Nigeria. Journal of African Archaeology 4, 111-138.
Martinón-Torres, M., Rehren, Th. & Freestone, I. (2006): Mullite and the mystery of Hessian wares. Nature 444, 437-438.
Rehren, Th. (2006): The minting of platinum roubles Part IV: Platinum roubles as an archive for the history of platinum production. Platinum Metals Review 50, 120-129.
Rehren, Th & Pusch, E. (2005): Late Bronze Age Egyptian glass production at Qantir-Piramesses. Science 308, 1756-1759.
Rehren, Th., Spencer, L. & Triantafyllidis, P. (2005): The primary production of glass at Hellenistic Rhodes. In: H. Cool, ed, Annales du 16e Congres de l’Association Internationale pour l’Histoire du Verre, Nottingham, 39-43.