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Title: μXRF Mapping as a Powerful Technique for Investigating Metal Objects from the Archaeological Site of Ferento (Central Italy)
Authors: Capobianco, Giuseppe
Sferragatta, Adriana
Lanteri, Luca
Agresti, Giorgia
Bonifazi, Giuseppe
Serranti, Silvia
Pelosi, Claudia 
Issue Date: 2020
This research concerns the application of micro X-ray fluorescence (micro-XRF) mapping to the investigation of a group of selected metal objects from the archaeological site of Ferento, a Roman and then medieval town in Central Italy. Specifically, attention was focused on two test pits, named IV and V, in which metal objects were found, mainly pertaining to the medieval period and never investigated before the present work from a compositional point of view. The potentiality of micro-XRF mapping was tested through a Bruker Tornado M4 equipped with an Rh tube, operating at 50 kV, 500 micro-A, and spot 25 micro-m obtained with polycapillary optics. Principal component analysis (PCA) and multivariate curve resolution (MCR) were used for processing the X-ray fluorescence spectra. The results showed that the investigated items are characterized by different compositions in terms of chemical elements. Three little wheels are made of lead, while the fibulae are made of copper-based alloys with varying amounts of tin, zinc, and lead. Only one ring is iron-based, and the other objects, namely a spatula and an applique, are also made of copper-based alloys, but with different relative amounts of the main elements. In two objects, traces of gold were found, suggesting the precious character of these pieces. MCR analysis was demonstrated to be particularly useful to confirm the presence of trace elements, such as gold, as it could differentiate the signals related to minor elements from those due to major chemical elements.
ISSN: 2313-433X
DOI: 10.3390/jimaging6070059
Appears in Collections:A1. Articolo in rivista

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