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Proceedings Paper

SIRIS: a high resolution scanning infrared camera for examining paintings
Author(s): David Saunders; Nick Atkinson; John Cupitt; Haida Liang; Craig Sawyers; Richard Bingham
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Paper Abstract

The new SIRIS (Scanning InfraRed Imaging System) camera developed at the National Gallery in London allows high-resolution images of paintings to be made in the near infrared region (900-1700 nm). Images of 5000 × 5000 pixels are made by moving a 320 × 256 pixel InGaAs array across the focal plane of the camera using two orthogonal translation stages. The great advantages of this camera over scanning infrared devices are its relative portability and that image acquisition is comparatively rapid - a full 5000 × 5000 pixel image can be made in around 20 minutes. The paper describes the development of the mechanical, optical and electronic components of the camera, including the design of a new lens. The software routines used to control image capture and to assemble the individual 320 × 256 pixel frames into a seamless mosaic image are also mentioned. The optics of the SIRIS camera have been designed so that the camera can operate at a range of resolutions; from around 2.5 pixels per millimetre on large paintings of up to 2000 × 2000 mm to 10 pixels per millimetre on smaller paintings or details of paintings measuring 500 × 500 mm. The camera is primarily designed to examine underdrawings in paintings; preliminary results from test targets and paintings are presented and the quality of the images compared with those from other cameras currently used in this field.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 August 2005
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5857, Optical Methods for Arts and Archaeology, 58570Q (12 August 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.612086
Show Author Affiliations
David Saunders, National Gallery (United Kingdom)
Nick Atkinson, National Gallery (United Kingdom)
John Cupitt, National Gallery (United Kingdom)
Haida Liang, Nottingham Trent Univ. (United Kingdom)
Craig Sawyers, Technology Enterprise (United Kingdom)
Richard Bingham, Univ. College London (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5857:
Optical Methods for Arts and Archaeology
Renzo Salimbeni; Luca Pezzati, Editor(s)

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