Optical Microscopy Lab

Lab microscopia ottica  1

The laboratory holds two modular polarized light microscopes (LEICA DMRXP and DMRX) equipped with HP PL Fluotar objective lenses, double viewing system, digital reflex cameras and relative softwares for image acquisition, transmitted and reflected light sources, and UV light source.

Besides classical mineralogical-petrographic analysis of thin sections of rocks, these instruments allow to carry out many kinds of observations, with various magnifications and using different types of lightings, working on material sections purposely prepared in the Laboratory of Ultrathin Sections.

Softwares dedicated to computerized image analysis allow to quantify the microstructural and textural features under study (e.g. measurement of crystal size and morphology of a crystalline aggregate, analysis of preferred orientations of grains, estimate of the binder/aggregate ratio in a mortar, measurement of the dimensions of pores in a porous material, and so on).

In short, these equipments allow to obtain the petrographic characterization of mainly crystalline materials and their alteration or decay phenomena, the definition of the microstratigraphy of a sample, the characterization of ancient treatments of surfaces of monuments, the validation of methods and products for restoration, the control of conservation interventions, and so on.

A stereomicroscope (WILD M10) with high depth of field is also present in the lab. Besides being used for the observation of the surfaces of the samples, this instruments is also used for choosing the right inclination of the cut of microfragments to be observed in ultrathin section.

Lead scientist
  • Scala Andrea