Add to favorite
Subscribe to our Newsletters Subscribe to our Newsletters Get Daily Updates RSS

Laser Welding for Restoring Masterpieces
January 21, 2010 17:24

The Hermitage (

Painters from the Hermitage, world-famous museum of St. Petersburg, developed a new technology for restoration of art works, which were made of metal. The technology is based upon a recently developed compact laser, which became a reliable instrument in restorer’s hands.

Among other things, restoration of art objects, which are made of metal, includes elimination of various flaws, fractures, faults and caverns. Many art works are made by means of mixed technique or made of more than one material. Sometimes, masterpieces of old masters could not be taken to pieces, and a restorer faces a difficult task – remove fractures and flaws on one side of an item without damaging neighbouring fragments.

At different times different solutions for the described problem existed. Traditional techniques for fighting fractures were gluing or soldering. Reliable glues, made on the basis of epoxy resins, which are known to provide expected adhesive strength, appeared only in the second half of the previous century. They were widely used in restoration and did enormous harm, since their usage violated main principle of restoration – reversibility of materials, in other words, glue dissolution and returning glued item to its initial state. Soft solders are not always a solution, especially in case of dealing with precious metals. Unsolvable problems arise, when restoration of items, made of combination of metals with wood (weapons), leather (armour, hand bags), fabric, precious and semi-precious stones, is required. No glue or soldering is allowed in these cases. Restorers from the Hermitage found the solution – they used laser-beam welding with low-intensity lasers. Before using this technology on museum pieces, restorers for several years performed experiments, which resulted in optimal regimes of laser welding.



Coherent monochromatic laser beam, which has low angular spreading, provides high focusing accuracy and high energy concentration in strictly determined and very small work area. As a result, metal surface in zone of interest rapidly heats and then melts down. Fresh melting zone then rapidly crystallizes, and weld seam forms.

Another advantage of laser welding apart from high focusing accuracy is easy access to hard-to-reach places and heating a tiny working spot due to small diameter of laser beam without using any welding consumables. Moreover, laser welding causes no tension, which later can result in crack formation, and eliminates frequent companion of common welding process – weld seam corrosion. Gentle laser welding, which guarantees lack of damage for surfaces, which happened to lie close to restoration site, can be used for welding gold- and silver-plated metals without damaging the coating, as well as restoring museum pieces, made of combination of materials – metal and wood, metal and leather, metal and fabric, metal and precious stones, metal and enamel, various varnishes, paintings and etc.

Source: Science & Life

Kizilova Anna

Tags: Russian Scientists Russian technologies    

Next Previous

You might also find interesting:

Microcapsules to Carry DNA-Vaccines Making Solar Batteries Cheaper and More Effective Premise in Cheops Pyramid Discovered with Geant4 Developed with Participation of TSU Scientists Space Oddity: Chris Hadfield Safely Lands to Millions of YouTube Views Englishmen See what Russians Hear

Comment on our site

RSS   twitter      submit

Exhibition Fairs  Georgy Yakulov  Exhibitions in Moscow  the Altai   Russian media  adventure tourism  Gorky Park  Music Theaters  Hermitage Museum  Kolomenskoye  Moscow  buy Russian designers  St. Petersburg  Khabarovsk  Russian opera  Russian oil and gas industry   Moscow sightseeing  Nobel Prize  Sergei Ursulyak  Buryatia  Russian tourism  Vandalism  Mountain Shoria  Nikolo-Ugreshsky monastery  Transportation  Russian economy  Russian children  airports  Russian laws  Yantarny  Sochi Olympic Games 2014  Brass Music Festival  Voronezh   Stavropol Territory  Frauds  Russian Cinema  Vladimir Vernadsky  Russian business  Legal Services in Russia  Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia  Sheremetyevo Airport  tourism for disabled  Russian science  parks of Perm  Home Credit and Finance  Ferdinand Wrangell  Russian scientists  Painting, graphics  USA  Pavel Cherenkov 

Travel Blogs
Top Traveling Sites