Non-destructive and micro-invasive testing techniques for characterizing materials, structures and restoration problems in mural paintings

Mariagrazia Tortora, Stefano Sfarra, Marco Chiarini, Valeria Daniele, Giuliana Taglieri, Giorgio Cerichelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, chemical and structural studies of medieval wall paintings in Ocre (L'Aquila, Italy) are presented. During the latest restoration campaign, non-destructive (Near-Infrared Reflectography and Infrared Thermography) and micro-invasive (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, μ-Raman, Scanning Electron Microscopy with X-ray Microanalysis, X-Ray Diffraction, X-Ray Fluorescence, Optical Microscopy, Mass Spectrometry, Thermogravimetry) analyses were performed in order to determine the detachments of wall surfaces and the characterization of original and restoration materials. Data integration allowed to reconstruct the conservative history, the execution techniques and the conservation problems of the artefact, as well as to assess the effectiveness of restoration activities adopted. The combined use of physical and micro-chemical techniques proved to be effective for an in-depth study of materials stratification of paintings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)971-985
Number of pages15
JournalApplied Surface Science
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes



  • Micro-chemical analyses
  • Non-Destructive testing techniques
  • Pigments
  • Plaster
  • Restoration products
  • Structural defects and rising damp phenomenon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films

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