Human Use of Fire from 1 Million Years Ago

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012 - Business Gallery

Human Use of Fire from 1 Million Years AgoHuman Use of Fire from 1 Million Years Ago

When humans began using fire? It has been debated for a long time. Recent studies show that human use of fire since 1 million years ago. Human Use of Fire from 1 Million Years Ago

Researchers from Boston University, Francesco Berna, found evidence of the use of fire in the Cave Wonderweck, South Africa. He publishes his research results in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Previously, there was the notion that human ancestors began to use fire since 1.5 million years ago or even earlier. However, a problem that arises is how to distinguish between natural and artificial fire?

Knowledge of early human use of fire itself is very important in archeology and evolution. This behavior is an indication of the evolution of the human brain and intelligence.

In a statement to the AP on Monday (02.04.2012), Berne revealed that the evidence of the use of bone ash and fire is burning a few times.

Michael Chazan of the University of Torronto involved in the study said, the human ancestors was probably carrying material that is burned naturally into the cave to make the fire bigger.

Based on the stone tools found at the study site, Chazan said that the human species began to make fire is Homo erectus. This species has been there since 2 million years ago.

In research, Berna did not find evidence of preparation such as a fireplace or burning a hole deep enough. But, he argues that there may occur due to natural combustion, such as lightning.

Trace the use of fire is 30 meters from the mouth of the cave. And, because of changes since 1 million years ago, then maybe the location is actually more in the use of fire. Human Use of Fire from 1 Million Years Ago

Human Use of Fire from 1 Million Years Ago

Berna also said that the fire could not be derived from the combustion of bat guano, or droppings. In some other cases, this can happen, though rarely encountered.

Berna said the bones could be indicative of combustion causes discoloration and chemicals. There is also evidence of burning in the rocks. Prove the existence of combustion ash leaves, grass, and twigs.

Intended use of the fire is unknown at the time. Investigators suspect the fire may be used for cooking. Ancestors ate meat and throw the bones into the fire. Alternatively, the heat used to warm and protect from attacks of wild animals.

The results Berna get responses from many researchers.

Anne Skinner of Williams College, Williamstown, Mass., said the results of this study should be compared with other studies in the nearest place that shows the use of fire in the same time.

According to Skinner, a combination of evidence from several adjacent places will be stronger. Previously, the burnt bones were also found in the Swartkrans cave cave not far from Cave Wonderweck.

Wil Roebroeks of Leiden University in The Netherlands and Paola Villa of the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg in South Africa said that the study does not provide strong evidence Berna.

According to Roebroeks and Villa, there is no physical evidence to show that human ancestors have been using fire for it. Previous studies revealed that the new man using fire 400,000 years ago.

Berna will return to the Cave Wonderweck to do more research this year. Human Use of Fire from 1 Million Years Ago

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