Ocean Optics LIBS IDs Fake Antiques
DUNEDIN, Fla., Aug. 25, 2010 — To separate authentic ceramic antiques from fakes, nationally recognized antiques appraiser Guan Haisen has employed an Ocean Optics LIBS system, with QE65000 spectrometer, to help him identify artificially aged ceramics and artifacts.
Using an Ocean Optics LIBS system, antiques appraiser Guan Haisen examines an antique vase. (Photo: Ocean Optics).
Utilized in China’s Beijing Antique City, the LIBS system employs a laser to ‘burn’ away a very tiny area (invisible to the naked eye) of the object under test, which causes a plasma to form. The plasma is then analyzed for the key elements of interest, including chemicals used to simulate the process of aging. The entire process takes less than 30 seconds.
While the ceramics examination industry in China currently relies heavily on the appraiser’s knowledge and experience, LIBS analysis can now bring a level of technical accuracy to antique identification. Haisen has used LIBS to augment his expertise and obtain more accurate results. The new form of scientific verification is anticipated to be the standard practice.
The accuracy of the spectrometer and software were vital to Haisen when selecting a system for the relatively new application. Portability and accuracy in the field were also considerations as the appraiser often travels to the object rather than ship delicate items to the lab. In addition, the company’s flexibility allowed Haisen to design a new configuration of the LIBS system to meet his needs.
The LIBS system is also used for RoHS screening, gem origin determination and elemental determinations in mixed powders.
A supplier of solutions for optical sensing, Ocean Optics manufactures chemical sensors, analytical instrumentation, optical fibers, metrology products and optics.
For more information, visit: www.oceanoptics.com