Archaeology of Human Origins
This line of research centers on studying how hominins lived by means of the materials left in the archaeological record. Stone tools and the associated animal bones are the principal source of information for researching and understanding how human culture originated and evolved.
This research line utilises terrestrial cosmic-ray-produced (= cosmogenic) nuclides to investigate timescales and rates of earth surface processes to understand past climate and environmental conditions that have great implications to hominid migrations and settlements.
This line of research carries out classic morphometry studies, as well as 2D and 3D morphometric analyses using computerized axial microtomography (μCT scan), of the dentition of hominins of the Pliocene and Pleistocene, as well as modern humans.
Direct dating of fossils teeth and bones
This line of research is focused on the direct dating of fossil remains found in archaeo-paleontological context, with special emphasis on those that cannot be dated using Radiocarbon, either because showing unsuitable characteristics or simply because beyond the limits of the method
Electron Spin Resonance
This line of research is focused on Electron Spin Resonance (ESR), a highly versatile dating method that can be applied to a wide range of materials, the most widely used being tooth enamel and the optically bleached quartz grains extracted from sediment.
Genetic influences on dental variation
This research line focuses in three aims: developing new methods that characterize dental variation in accordance with the underlying genetic influences; exploring how the underlying mechanisms have evolved through time; and interpreting the evolution of the non-dental traits that are related through shared genetic effects.
Geomorphology and Formation Processes
This line of research deals with the study of landscape modeling to determine its dynamical evolution, reconstructing the morphogenetic processes and their relationship with climate change, and frame paleontological deposits in archaeological physical context.
Geophysical characterization of karstic fillings
This line of research deals with the identification of subterranean karstic galleries, their geometry, continuity, and possible fillings and gaps, can be carried out using indirect methods such as geophysical prospection based on electrical conductivity, georadar and magnetism.
The aim of this research line is to develop and improve the methodology of luminescence dating and apply this technique to studies on human evolution and understanding of geological processes
Paleoecology of Mammals
This line of research studies the relations between the different species that coexisted in the past and their interactions with the environment in which they lived.
Paleokarst and Sedimentary fillings
This line of research studies caves, great natural traps, accumulating detritus, rock chemicals and organic matter
Paleolithic of the Iberian Peninsula
This line of research studies periods key to understanding the evolution of the behavior of human groups in the Iberian Peninsula.
This line of research devotes substantial efforts to the magnetostratigraphy of sedimentary materials for chronological purposes.
This line of research on human paleoneurology studies brain evolution in fossil species, combining functional craniology and evolutionary neuroanatomy.
Paleophysiology and Ecology of hominins
This line of research studies, from an evolutionary point of view, some of the most important physiological processes in the biological history of our species, such as reproduction (pregnancy and lactation), growth, development and metabolism in general.
This line of research is focused on the study of ancient proteins. Proteins are more stable than DNA so their information can be preserved for millions of years in different bio-mineralized tissues such as bones, teeth, or even eggshells.
This line of research centers on studying spatial aspects of the archaeological record as a consequence of the activities of hominins at sites and in the landscape to understand, prioritize and integrate archaeological units into social and paleoenvironmental contexts and try to establish predictive models of territorial occupation
Technology and Traceology of lithic industies
The Technology and Traceology of lithic industries are complementary lines of research. Lithic Technology studies lithic artifacts of the Paleolithic. Through analytical methodologies, lithic assemblages are characterized in terms of technological and typological patterns emphasizing their technological sophistication and implications for hominin technological behavior.
This line of research is focused on the dating method of Uranium Series. It is a technique of wide applicability for cave deposits, paleosoils and mollusc skeletons.
Zooarchaeology and Taphonomy
This line of research is in the Archaeological and Paleobiology programs. Zooarchaeology and Taphonomy are two disciplines with origins in very different fields of science. Nevertheless, their application to the world of the Quaternary has meant that they share many objectives, methods and techniques, which has often led to the two terms being used interchangeably, almost as synonyms.