University of Oulu

Stagno, V., Mailhiot, S., Capuani, S., Galotta, G., & Telkki, V.-V. (2021). Testing 1D and 2D single-sided NMR on Roman age waterlogged woods. Journal of Cultural Heritage, 50, 95–105.

Testing 1D and 2D single-sided NMR on Roman age waterlogged woods

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Author: Stagno, Valeria1,2; Mailhiot, Sarah3; Capuani, Silvia2;
Organizations: 1Earth Sciences Department, Sapienza University of Rome, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, 00185 Rome, Italy
2National Research Council - Institute for Complex Systems (CNR-ISC) c/o Physics Department Sapienza University of Rome, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, 00185 Rome, Italy
3NMR Research Unit, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 30 0 0, 90 014 Oulu, Finland
4Biology Laboratory, Istituto Centrale per il Restauro, Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism (MIBACT), via di San Michele 25, 00153 Rome, Italy
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-08-17


Waterlogged archaeological wood can provide information on past human activities and technology but its structure may be modified due to microbial deterioration. Knowing its conservation state is fundamental for its restoration. Aim of this work was to test the use of non-destructive portable NMR for the microstructural characterization and preservation state of three archaeological wood samples (Roman age, 5th century AD). 1D T₁ and T₂ relaxation time distributions, as well as 2D T₁-T₂ and D-T₂ distributions were measured by single-sided NMR and interpreted with the help of high resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and optical microscopy. Due to the complexity of the ancient wood samples, in this first study a multi-analytical approach was required. It allowed the characterization of both waterlogged softwood (spruce) and hardwood (chestnut and maple) by quantifying relaxation times and diffusion water components affected by the presence of degradation products such as fungi, paramagnetic agents, and microstructural changes. Optical microscopy was needed to investigate the sub-microscopic wood elements not resolved by MRI and validate indirect single-sided NMR investigations. Observations and results of this study will allow the improvement of single-sided NMR protocols for the analyses of archaeological wood in situ with portable NMR.

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Series: Journal of cultural heritage
ISSN: 1296-2074
ISSN-E: 1778-3674
ISSN-L: 1296-2074
Volume: 50
Pages: 95 - 105
DOI: 10.1016/j.culher.2021.06.001
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 114 Physical sciences
Funding: The authors would like to thank funding of Lazio Region (Italy) under Torno Subito 2018 program of the Department of Education, Research, School, University and the Regional Body for the Right to Study and Knowledge (DiSCo). V.-V.T. thanks the European Research Council (ERC) under Horizon 2020 (H2020/2018-2022/ERC) [grant number 772110], Academy of Finland [grant numbers 289649, 294027 and 319216], the Kvantum institute (University of Oulu) and the CA15209 COST action (EURELAX) for financial support. S.M. thanks the Academy of Finland [grant number 321701].
EU Grant Number: (772110) UFLNMR - Ultrafast Laplace NMR
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 289649
Detailed Information: 289649 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
294027 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
319216 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
321701 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (