VOLKER STEGER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY VOLKER STEGER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Art forgery detection. Technician uses a needle to remove a tiny paint sample from a suspected forged painting for chemical analysis. By mass spectroscopy the molecular constituents of the sample can be found. X-ray diffractometry will show its crystal structure. These results can be matched with the chemical "fingerprints" of known paint pigments and binding agents in storage to reveal whether the paints are contemporary with the original painting. The photograph was taken at the Doerner Institute in Munich, Germany, which is headed by Dr Andreas Burmester. The Institute specializes in the detection of art forgeries by various imaging techniques and chemical analyses.
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