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Issue 3, 2005
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Near-infrared spectroscopic observation of the ageing process in archaeological wood using a deuterium exchange method

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Abstract

The ageing degradation of the fine wood structure of dry-exposed archaeological wood was investigated by Fourier transform near-infrared spectroscopy with the aid of a deuterium exchange method. The archaeological wood sample was taken from an old wooden temple in Japan (late 7th century), which has been designated as a UNESCO world heritage site. Comparing the analytical results with those of a modern wood sample of the same species, the ageing process of archaeological wood was clarified as a change in the state of order on a macromolecular structural level. It can be concluded from NIR spectra that the amorphous region, and partially semi-crystalline region, in cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin decreased by the ageing degradation, whereas the crystalline region in cellulose was not affected by the ageing. The accessibility of the diffusant to effect H/D-exchange was monitored by an OH-related absorption band obtained from FT-NIR transmission spectroscopy and characteristically varied with the ageing process of the wood samples, the absorption bands characteristic of a specific state of order and the diffusion agent. Finally, we proposed a morphological model to describe the variation of the fine structure of the microfibrils in the cell wall with ageing degradation. The state of microfibrils changed loosely by ageing, so that elementary fibrils were arranged loosely under 5 Å, whereas several elementary fibrils in the modern wood were arranged in very close proximity under 3 Å to each other.

Graphical abstract: Near-infrared spectroscopic observation of the ageing process in archaeological wood using a deuterium exchange method

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Publication details

The article was received on 18 Aug 2004, accepted on 07 Jan 2005 and first published on 21 Jan 2005


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B412759E
Citation: Analyst, 2005,130, 379-384

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    Near-infrared spectroscopic observation of the ageing process in archaeological wood using a deuterium exchange method

    S. Tsuchikawa, H. Yonenobu and H. W. Siesler, Analyst, 2005, 130, 379
    DOI: 10.1039/B412759E

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