Dating of wood and of ivory

Wood is a material that can easily be dated by infrared spectroscopy. The laboratory of the Museo d’Arte e Scienza uses this method as an alternative to existing ones because of its cheapness, reliability and accuracy.
Infrared spectroscopy is not a new technique: what is new is only its use for determining the age and authenticity of art objects.

Such dating is based on two fundamental factors:

  • all materials are composed of a set of specific molecules
  • some of these molecules undergo change with the passage of time

Fields of use:
Icons, paintings, furniture, statues and objects, not only of European production but also items belonging to Buddhist and African culture.

spettro foto 1Spectroscopy has recently started being applied by the Museum laboratory for the analysis also of ivory objects: identification of the material (possible imitations are numerous) and evaluation of ageing.

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