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Applus RTD dicovers hidden secrets at TEFAF artfair
Applus RTD was invited by the TEFAF and the Dutch national museum to help with the vetting of the artworks. With a special DDR (Direct Digital Radiography) system we made digital x-rays of artworks that were directly visible on the computer screen. This made it possible that the authenticity of the artworks could be assessed on the sport, by the experts, with help from non-destructive testing. 

Did you know?

On TEFAF 2016 in Maastricht an early Rembrandt painting was discovered! It was very obvious that this was on of Rembrandts paintings, that this could be established by the naked eye of the experts.

To be able to perform the radiographic inspection directly on the exhibition premises a special container with lead lining was set up, to protect the public from the (minimal) radiation of the DDR system. In the container the 'Wireless Digital Detector' panel from GE was positioned with a pulsating x-ray tube that produces a minimal amount of ionizing radiation. This DDR system ensures that a digital radiographic image is made on the digital imaging plate, which will be send wirelessly to the computer. This ensures that there's no need for developing an x-ray film or plate.
This will save a lot of time, and ensures that a reshoot can be taken in a split seconds if need be! Furthermore this DDR system is powered by a battery, and therefore it's very flexible deployable; you just need shielding.
Experts are looking at the result of the x-ray of a lithograph.
Directly after the x-ray image was made by the Applus RTD experts, the images of the artworks could be processed and edited with the advanced software. The Applus RTD specialist can use this software to enhance the image, and more or less contrast or even add colors to give clear insight in the state and 'secrets' of the artworks. With the radiographic images, the censors from -among others- the Dutch national Museum, could discover the hidden 'secrets'  of the art, and give a conclusive answer about the authenticity.
For example, based on the radiographic images the experts could determine the 'secret'  of how an artwork was made, or if any restorations were made, that are not visible to the naked eye.
Radiographic image of the silver statue
The National Museums Chief of Restauration and Conservation, mister Robert van Langh, determined based on one of our radiographic images that one of the tested artworks - a silver crucifix statue - was definitely made by a 17th century artist, and was not a copy! On the detailed radiographic image was clearly visible that the statue was made up from several different parts. If it would have been a copy, it would have been made differently. The non-destructive test on artworks gives valuable information!
Want to know more about digital radiography for art or industrial installations? Contact us. For more images of this inspection watch the TEFAF video .
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