Cross-section Analysis : FTIR Chemical Mapping

Whereas XRF and SEM-EDS provide elemental information, the technique of FTIR spectroscopy was used to elucidate molecular information related to the cross-sections. With complicated mixtures such as are commonly found in art materials, these examinations can prove difficult. In the case of the Hogarth cross-sections, recently developed mapping techniques were used in an attempt to gain useful molecular information about the mystery coating. If the coating is indeed protein-based, FTIR mapping should indicate the presence of corresponding amides (since proteins are bio-polymers composed of various amino acids). Arrows in the image above indicate the location of the mystery coating in a sample taken from William James. The following page shows the results from FTIR mapping of one of these areas.

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