Part of an indestructible component of any orthodox church, the Imperial Gates represent an important symbol in our cultural heritage. But in many cases the Imperial Gates from the wooden churches were damaged. In order to preserve and restore them, the scientific investigations of the Imperial Gate belonging to Nicula Monastery wooden church were performed by employing nondestructive and destructive methods. The wood essence was established, with its "health" status being investigated by FTIR (Fourier Transform Infrared) spectroscopy and DSC (Differential Scanning Calorimetry) thermal analysis. The painting materials employed by popular artists were determined by FTIR and XRF (X-ray fluorescence) spectroscopy as gypsum, calcite (rear background), lead white (Archangel Clothes), lead-minium (Archangel Clothes, leaf), iron oxide (Imperial Gate frame), malachite (green), Prussian blue (blue), orpiment (yellow), aliphatic, ester, and protein (probably egg yolk degradation products). Using similar colors as in the original artwork (resulting from the scientific investigation of the pigments) a 3D reconstruction has been performed. The restored Imperial Gates are placed in the old Nicula wooden church, being included into a tourist and religious circuit.
Bratu, I., Siluan, M., Mǎruţoiu, C., Kacso, I., Garabagiu, S., Mǎruţoiu, V. C., … Pop, D. (2017). Science Applied for the Investigation of Imperial Gate from Eighteenth Century Wooden Church of Nicula Monastery. Journal of Spectroscopy, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/6167856