Imaging and Sensing for Archaeology, Art History and Conservation (ISAAC) Research Centre
Nottingham Trent University's ISAAC Research Centre specialises in developing cutting edge, mobile, non-invasive and non-destructive imaging, spectroscopy and remote sensing systems tailored for cultural heritage applications.
These systems along with a range of complementary state-of-the-art commercial instruments are used both in our ISAAC Mobile Lab (MOLAB) for in situ analysis of cultural assets at museums and heritage sites, and as a FIXLAB facility at our premises. Along with the novel data science methods of the ISAAC DigiLab, the instruments are applied to solving conservation, art history, archaeology and other arts and humanities research questions.
The centre provides Mobile Lab and DigiLab access to all Heritage Institutions, including museums, art galleries, libraries, archives, and archaeological and historic sites, where the mobile and long-range equipment can safely assess the objects and monuments in situ and at a distance, without the need for scaffolding.
For example, it has the most comprehensive range of in-house developed Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) systems covering a broad range of wavelengths, including long wavelength OCT systems for deeper penetration into scattering materials. It has a unique suite of remote imaging and spectroscopy instruments including spectral imaging and various laser induced spectroscopy (e.g. Raman) that can operate at distances up to tens of metres.
The ISAAC team specialises in interdisciplinary research at the interface between science and heritage, from instrument development, data science to interpretation of results for heritage applications. The team has provided access and collaborated with all the national museums and heritage organisations and some regional museums in the UK, as well as major international heritage organisations.
The ISAAC Mobile Lab has carried out analysis at heritage organisations around the world from Europe to the USA, China and New Zealand. It enables multi-modal and in situ analysis of nearly all types of heritage materials and objects. It focuses on non-invasive analysis of materials from identification of materials (e.g. pigments and other materials), monitoring of degradation, revealing of hidden or faded drawings and writings, imaging of surface and subsurface microstructure and stratigraphy, study of historic manufacturing techniques, provenance, painting techniques, investigating causes of degradation, monitoring conservation treatments etc.
No, this infrastructure does not provide funding.
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