First results on the use of a EDXRF scanner for 3D imaging of paintings

Roberto Cesareo, Stefano Ridolfi, Antonio Brunetti, Ricardo T Lopes, Giovanni E Gigante


A 3D map of chemical elements distribution from energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence (EDXRF) analysis would be a perfect conclusion in a detailed study of any type of artifact. This map can be easily achieved by using synchrotron light as source of radiation, and micro-optics both at the source and at the detector. In such a manner a micro-voxel is irradiated and detected, which can be at any depth with respect to the surface of the artifact. This method is effective but needs a high-intensity X-ray source; therefore, its use in archaeometry is limited. An alternative method is proposed in the present paper, which uses a portable EDXRF-device to measure the altered Ka/Kb or La/Lb-ratios, which allow to locate the chemical elements. Several examples are described.

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