CSIRO's Deborah Lau measures the colour of petroglyphs using a portable, hand-held spectrophotometer.
Looking out for the Burrup rock art
In this vodcast, we follow a team of CSIRO scientists as they journey through the Burrup Peninsula in Western Australia examining ancient Aboriginal rock art for any changes in colour, contrast or chemical composition possibly brought on from emissions from local industry. (7:01)
1 October 2009 | Updated 25 November 2011
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The CSIRO was commissioned by the Burrup Rock Art Monitoring Management Committee, in conjunction with the Western Australian Department of State Development, to undertake this environmental study involving scientists from CSIRO’s Materials Science and Engineering and the Minerals Down Under National Research Flagship.
The Aboriginal rock art in the Burrup are not paintings, but rather petroglyphs, images that have been created by chipping or engraving into the surface-weathered coat of the boulders that characterise the area.
These petroglyphs have cultural significance for the local Aboriginal people, as well as being archaeologically important at a national and international level.
Read more about the Long-term study to monitor WA’s Burrup rock art.