30 March 2016 to 1 April 2016
Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati
Europe/Rome timezone

THz diagnostics for art conservation at the ENEA center of Frascati

Not scheduled
Aula Bruno Touschek (Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati)

Aula Bruno Touschek

Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati

Via E. Fermi 40, 00044 Frascati (RM)


Dr Emilio Giovenale (ENEA)


The electromagnetic radiation, in the range from IR to X-rays, is widely used in the field of art conservation and diagnostics. In the last few years a new interest was devoted to the longer wavelengths, in the so called “THz region” of the spectrum, due to the peculiar characteristics of the radiation in this spectral range, that make it ideal for applications in this field [1]: it’s low photon energy and its ability to penetrate dielectric materials. This high penetration capabilities were used to demonstrate the possibility to detect artwork hidden under layers of other dielectric materials [2, 3, 4]. Making use of phase-sensitive techniques it is also possible to get information on the optical properties of the materials under study and to obtain images that include spectroscopic information about the sample [5]. The realization of new radiation sources in this region was the key to develop new techniques to be applied to the field of art conservation. New technologies were able to fill the so called “THz gap” with both free electron source and laser drive sources. At present a wide choice of THz radiation source are available to researchers. A certain number of such sources are at present available at the THz laboratories at ENEA-Frascati and they were used to develop imaging systems for mural paintings in the framework of the Italy-Japan bilateral project “THz-ARTE” [6]. The main applications developed in this project will be shown, including a new 3D scanning system developed for mural painting, tested on a real “fresco on tavella” by Alessandro Gherardini. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS We gratefully acknowledge the “Ministero degli Affari Esteri e della Cooperazione internazionale” for funding the THz-ARTE project and the Museum of San Marco, Florence, for having allowed the access and measurements on Gherardini’s painting . REFERENCES [1] J. B. Jackson, J. Bowen, G. Walker, J. Labaune, G. Mourou, M. Menu, K. Fukunaga, “A survey of terahertz applications in cultural heritage conservation science”, IEEE Trans. THz Science and Technology, vol. 1, pp. 220-231, 2011. [2] Gian Piero Gallerano, Andrea Doria, Marzia Germini, Emilio Giovenale, Giovanni Messina, Ivan P. Spassovsky, “Phase-Sensitive Reflective Imaging Device in the mm-wave and Terahertz Regions”, J Infrared Milli Terahtz Waves (2009) 30:1351–1361 [3] Gillian C. Walker, John W. Bowen, J-Bianca Jackson, Julien Labaune, Gerard Mourou, Michel Menu, Wendy Matthews, and Ian Hodder, “Sub-surface Terahertz Imaging through Uneven Surfaces: Visualizing Neolithic Wall Paintings in Catalh¨oy¨uk,” Proc. CLEO, Science and Innovations, no. CTu3B, 2012. [4] C. Seco, V. Lopez, G. Arauz, A. Redo, J. Palacios, J. Tejada, “Goya’s artwork imaging with Teraherz waves”, Optics Express, vol. 21, pp. 17800-17805, 2013. [5] G.P. Gallerano, A.Doria, E. Giovenale, G. Messina, I. Spassovsky, A.C. More, M. Seracini, “Spectral Reflectivity of Pigments in the THz Region”, Proc.of IRMMW-THz 2011. 36rd International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter and Terahertz Wave, Houston (USA) IEEE Xplore digital library p.1-2 ISBN: 978-1-4577-0510-6 [6] A.Doria, E. Giovenale, G.P. Gallerano, M. Picollo, K. Fukunaga “A Millimeter Wave/Terahertz 3D Scanner for Wall Painting Investigation”, Proc.of IRMMW-THz 2014. 39th International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter and Terahertz Waves, Tucson (US) IEEE Xplore digital library p.1-2 ISBN: 978-147993877-3

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