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Archaeological & Environmental Research Laboratory


The Archaeological & Environmental Research Laboratory (AERL) is a multi-disciplinary UT Core Facility established to meet the growing needs of academic, governmental, and industry users in soil, sediment, and microartifact/ecofact analyses.

The AERL is housed within the University of Tennessee’s Archaeological Research Laboratory (ARL). An APHIS inspected facility authorized to receive foreign and domestic soil, the AERL is able to receive and analyze samples from around the world.

Howard Cyr, Geoarchaeologist/Senior Archaeologist at the ARL, serves as the Director of the AERL. For more information, please contact Howard Cyr at 865-974-9645 or

Field and Laboratory services include:

  • Geoarchaeological Investigations
  • Geophysical Prospecting
    • Ground Penetrating Radar – GSSI SIR 4000 GPR System
    • Gradiometery – Bartington Grad601 fluxgate gradiometer
  • Particle Size Distribution
    • Malvern Mastersizer 3000 Laser Diffraction Particle Size Analyzer
    • Hydrometer Analysis (ASTM D 422)
    • Nested Sieve Analysis (wet or dry) (ASTM D 422)
  • Particle Size Analysis Sample Pretreatment
  • Organic Matter Concentration – Loss on Ignition technique
  • Inorganic Carbon Concentration
  • pH and Electrical Conductivity
  • Soil Geochemistry
  • Magnetic Susceptibility (Bartington MS3 Meter w/ MS2E Sensor)
  • Sediment and Soil Core Stratigraphic Analysis
  • Micromorphologic/Microstratigraphic Thin Section Analysis
  • Microartifact Analysis
  • Archaeological Sample Flotation (for the recovery of paleoethnobotanical, microartifact, and radiocarbon samples

Service Fee Structure

The AERL offers three separate fee structures based on client:

  • Internal Academic Service Fee for UT students, faculty, and staff
  • External Academic Service Fee for academic institutions outside of the UT system
  • Private Industry Service Fee for non-academic institutions and companies

AERL Services Rates


The AERL Core Facility is located at the Archaeological Research Laboratory in University of Tennessee’s Middlebrook Building (5723 Middlebrook Pike)

Contact Information

Please direct any questions regarding AERL services, service costs, requests for training, or scheduling to:

Howard Cyr

Archaeological Research Laboratory
Archaeological & Environmental Research Laboratory
5723 Middlbrook Pike, Room 237
Knoxville, TN 37921

Phone: 865-974-9645


Geoarchaeology, geophysics, ground penetrating radar, cemetery survey, GPR, remote sensing, sediment analysis, landscape, GIS, southeast, archaeology, core analysis, deep testing, soil analysis, GPSC