The valorization of a portable optical measurement system for the non-destructive, in situ characterization of cultural heritage materals

Project Details

Description

Within the framework of the first Proof-of-Concept call of the Industrial Research Fund (IOF), members of the SKAR (Prof. Karin Nys and Hilde Wouters) and TONA (Prof. Hugo Thienpont and Dr. Wendy Meulebroeck) departments have received funding to further develop a portable optical measurement system for the non-destructive, in situ characterization of cultural heritage materials.
The two groups are collaborating with the SURF group (Prof. Herman Terryn and Kitty Baert) within the context of a HOA research project to investigate the possibilities of optical spectroscopy for characterizing cultural heritage materials, with the focus on ancient glass. The introduction of an existing technique into a new application domain was motivated by the many disadvantages linked to the traditional chemical analyses which are currently being used exclusively. The HOA project only began work in 2008, but the researchers have already demonstrated that the information obtained by non-destructive optical measurements is similar to and compatible with the information obtained by the destructive scientific analyses for different types of glass-related applications. The availability of this non-destructive and straightforward technique will have an enormous social impact on the investigation and conservation of museological, archaeological and historical collections. A quick calculation shows that five times more samples can be measured with optical spectroscopy with a budget that is three orders of magnitude lower than that of the standard chemical methods.
Another important asset of this newly developed optical methodology is the availability of a portable instrument which can be used in situ. Since this portable instrument responds to national and international demand, an even more expanded valorization potential can be expected. Moreover, other markets, such as the investigation of ancient paintings, could also be exploited.

AcronymIOFPOC1
StatusActive
Effective start/end date1/10/09 → …

Keywords

  • Art History
  • Archeology