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Research article
Volume: 49 | Article ID: art00003
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A New Multispectral Imaging System for Examining Paintings
  DOI :  10.2352/J.ImagingSci.Technol.2005.49.6.art00003  Published OnlineNovember 2005
Abstract

A new multispectral system developed at the National Gallery is presented. The system is capable of measuring the spectral reflectance per pixel of a painting. These spectra are found to be almost as accurate as those recorded with a spectrophotometer; there is no need for any spectral reconstruction apart from a simple cubic interpolation between measured points. The procedure for recording spectra is described and the accuracy of the system is quantified. An example is presented of the use of the system to scan a painting of St. Mary Magdalene by Crivelli. The multispectral data are used in an attempt to identify some of the pigments found in the painting by comparison with a library of spectra obtained from reference pigments using the same system. In addition, it is shown that the multispectral data can be used to render a color image of the original under a chosen illuminant and that interband comparison can help to elucidate features of the painting, such as retouchings and underdrawing, that are not visible in trichromatic images.

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Haida Liang, David Saunders, John Cupitt, "A New Multispectral Imaging System for Examining Paintingsin Journal of Imaging Science and Technology,  2005,  pp 551 - 562,  https://doi.org/10.2352/J.ImagingSci.Technol.2005.49.6.art00003

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