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Science working for history

​Clefs CEA enters the age of digital! By reading this issue, you will know everything about innovative techniques and technologies developed by the CEA on behalf of art, history and archaeology.

Published on 21 October 2019

​Heritage is not only a matter of culture, nor is it the preserve of historians, archaeologists or restorers. Physicists and chemists also contribute to the preservation and showcasing of this heritage. This is also the case with the CEA, whose staff have for many years been developing and implementing a range of innovative techniques and technologies on behalf of art, history and archaeology.

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#1 Understanding ancient civilisations

Various methods, including dating, are used to better understand the technical and cultural practices of our ancestors. This is essential when seeking to gain a more detailed understanding of how they lived and how they interacted with their environment.

#2 Preserving the vestiges of the past

Whether they are made of organic, inorganic or ferrous materials, the vestiges of the past which have reached us frequently need to be cared for and sometimes even restored. Various processes, in which CEA specialises, have been successfully used for this.

#3 Helping with archaeological investigations

High-definition muography, a cutting-edge technology originally developed to track particles in high-energy physics experiments, is proving to be a valuable tool in enabling archaeologists to probe the interior of objects, where photography can see only the surface.

#4 From the past to the future

What if the objects from the past helped us better predict the behaviour of materials in the future, more particularly to obtain reliable predictions of their alteration? This area of research, in which CEA is the leader, is only one of the promising avenues of a constantly changing overall approach.