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Asked by arora to Lauren, Marisol, Michael, Sarah, Sophie on 17 Nov 2016.
An indicatior is linked to one of your other questions about the pH scale. It is something (a compound) which changes colour at a specific pH and scientists use it to find out the pH!
There are many kinds of indicator to detect the properties of a substance!
In archaeology – indicator means something very different to what it means in chemistry!
To us, indicators are shapes and features on bones that may point to some past disease, a particular food people were eating, or a sign of hard exercise people used to do. For example, deep holes forming in the surface of the teeth can be a sign of very poor hygiene in the past. People in the past did not brush their teeth, so any sugary foods that get caught in the cracks of the tooth surface will get eaten by bacteria. Bacteria then produce acid that bores holes into the tooth. This is a kind of disease called ‘caries’, and ‘caries’ are an ‘indicator’ of poor tooth health and hygiene.
I hope that was interesting to you!
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