Dr Helen Green

Dr Helen GreenResearch Fellow in Rock Art Dating, The University of Melbourne

What is the problem you are trying to address?
My research is focused on adapting and developing techniques to characterize and radiometrically date layered mineral coatings found in association with Indigenous rock art in Australia’s Kimberley region. These coatings, identified across the region, also hold the potential to record paleoclimatic fluctuations in rock art shelters on time scales relevant to the stylistic sequence of rock art styles

What is your research doing to solve this problem
My work has identified that layered mineral coatings present in Kimberley rock art shelters, are rich in the mineral Whewellite, which contains carbon within its structure, allowing us to radiocarbon date individual layers. Dating these layers and matching patterns in the internal layering of these deposits across the region, has revealed that they were deposited synchronously, suggesting a regional scale environmental control on their formation and their potential as a new paleoclimatic archive.

Public outreach or science communication outputs:

Archaeological science, Geochronology, Rock Art Research, Geochemistry

Archaeological science