In order to deepen the study of the movable findings discovered during the excavation and to identify their characteristics, Ormylia Foundation - Art Diagnosis Centre has developed a mobile laboratory that carried out numerous on-the-spot tests with non-destructive methods on a variety of objects.
The non-destructive testing mobile lab incorporates the following techniques:
- Multispectral photography
- nIR/mIR/UV/VIS spectroscopy
- X-ray fluorescence (XRF)
- MicroRaman spectroscopy
- Acoustic microscopy
along with the corresponding software that allows the recording and processing of the data.
The main objective of the archaeometric part of the system developed under the Surgical Excavation project was the ability of the mobile lab to answer archaeological questions regarding the “place” of each object in space and time. Namely, the requested answers emerged through the provision of information related to the pathology of the excavation findings, their materials and construction techniques, making the extracted information particularly rich and multidimensional.
In this context, a bottom-up approach of the objects was attempted, including a comprehensive methodology and integrating different scientific methods and corresponding instrumentation and tools.
The non-destructive analysis applied included the development and expansion of high-resolution spectroscopy and tomography systems. All measuring devices were implemented and used in combination with each other, in order to make the most of the complementarity of each method. In fact, through the combination of acoustic microscopy and infrared spectroscopy a new technique revealed, the three-dimensional spectroscopic tomography.
The continuous improvement and upgrade of the mobile laboratory facilities, the maximization of the analytical performance of all methods and their further development for the documentation of cultural heritage objects remain a firm objective. Moreover, the scope of application is extended through the systematic study and optimization of the methods’ effectiveness on a great number of different objects and materials (stone, ceramics, glass or metal, mortars etc.) that come to light during an excavation.