Imaging heritage and other metal surfaces with X-ray excited optical microscopy

Pieter-Jan Sabbe
Short introduction: 

Heritage tourism represents a significant source of income for the European Union. Metals are vital to this, but corrode and degrade over time unless curative actions are taken. Conservators require non-destructive analysis techniques and specific instrumentations for the study and analysis of ancient objects that comprise our tangible cultural heritage. XEOM 1, a novel X-ray-excited optical microscopy system, is presented as a new addition to the conservator’s toolbox.

XEOM 1 allows non-destructive chemical imaging of heritage metal surfaces (approximately top 200 nm) in air and controlled atmosphere.

XEOM exploits the effect in which X-ray absorption results in the emission of electromagnetic radiation in the visible and near-visible bands, a phenomenon known as X-ray-excited optical luminescence (XEOL).

The work presented in the thesis comprises ground work for imaging of copper and copper corrosion products on assessment samples of varying patination; a multimethod analysis of heritage artefacts retrieved from King Henry VIII's flagship: the 'Mary Rose' and the study for an alternative excitation source for use of XEOM 1 outside the synchrotron.

The research and development of X-ray-excited optical microscopy was supplemented with the research regarding the copper corrosion of intrauterine devices (IUDs).


Please register for the reception before January 12

Prof. dr. Mieke Adriaens - Prof. dr. Mark Dowsett
Examining board: 
Prof. dr. Karel Strijckmans
Friday, January 19, 2018 - 14
auditorium S12, Campus Sterre, Krijgslaan 281, 9000 Gent