IPERION HSIntegrating Platforms for the European Research Infrastructure ON Heritage Science

Scanning VIS-NIR multispectral reflectography (395 – 2500 nm)

Multispectral imaging analysis offers amazing possibilities for diagnosis and study of artworks. Depending on the radiation used (e.g., visible VIS, infrared IR), the reconstructed images may reveal information that cannot be retrieved from a simple observation of the object. Results obtained are of extraordinary importance not only for the documentation of the artwork’s conservation status, but also for its preservation and memory. In particular, VIS radiation allows for spectrophotometric characterization of the painted surface entailing colour variation analysis, which may turn definitely useful for restoration purposes - e.g. for monitoring colour changes due to either the cleaning or aging. NIR radiation, thanks to the transparency of most pigments in this spectral region, enables the visualization of features underneath the painted surface, such as sketches of underdrawing, pentimenti and retouchings. The Multispectral Scanner is revolutionary in the field of VIS-NIR reflectography, as it provides a set of high-resolution images, simultaneously acquired at different wavelengths in a huge spectral region, ranging from 395 to 2500 nm. The stack of images, which are self-registered and aberration-free, facilitates the study of painting materials and hidden details, enabling to shed light on the artist’s technique and realization stages.

Fields of application

  • Cultural heritage

    architecture, art, decorative arts, manuscript, mosaics, painting, papyrus, photo, textile


  • inorganic

    ceramics, glass, stone, pigments, dyes

  • organic

    binding media, glues, wood, paper, textiles, varnishes, dyes, paint materials


Multispectral scanner

The multispectral scanner developed at CNR-INO is characterized by 32 spectral channels, 16 in the visible (395 – 765 nm) and 16 in the near-infrared range (750 – 2500 nm). The system is designed to guarantee safe measurement conditions, avoiding any damage to the analysed object. The XY scanning stages moves jointly the lighting and...