Research at the RGZM
Department of Volcanology, Archaeology and History of Technology (VAT) Studies
The Department of research for volcanology, archaeology and history of technology is the youngest branch of the RGZM. It is based at Mayen, a district of Mayen-Koblenz, amidst a geologically-young volcanic landscape. The last active volcano was the Laacher See Volcano, whose violent eruption almost 13,000 years ago left traces in distant parts of Europe. Today, the region is marked by an extensive and drastic mining of volcanically-produced resources.
Within the VAT department, location and topics of research are closely connected. Central issues include the formation of the landscape as well as the use of its resources by man since prehistoric times. Both of these can be easily observed in the area between Mayen, Koblenz and Andernach: in many cases, the quaternary volcanoes are exposed by the modern stone quarries. Through this geological window, the complex eruption activities of different types of volcanoes can be studied and charted. Similarly, new evidence for the history of technology is constantly being discovered. Old quarries and mines are constantly being uncovered by modern mining.
It is thereby possible to write about the economic history going back to the Neolithic of 7,000 years ago, simply based on mineral commodities.
In addition, the department of VAT is also responsible for the investigation and development of geologically, culturally and technologically historical monuments within the Volcano Park of the district of Mayen-Koblenz.
Research Emphasis of VAT
The Emergence of an Industrial Landscape