Support of confocal microscopy to the preliminary assessment of archaeological wood samples.- Each wooden artifact represents a specific case of study and the multi-disciplinary diagnostic analysis to be performed always vary. The first step usually consists in carrying out a macroscopic morphological investigation, possibly in situ, especially if the sample is very large. Then it is opportune to run the xilotomic analysis through microscopic examination of a small sample. For some samples, especially the archaeological remains, the limits to the availability of fragments to be analyzed induces to proceed directly to chemical and molecular expensive analysis even without a preliminary microscopic observeation, or the scanning electron microscope is used directly. To quickly determine whether the object of investigation is really wood allows programming the correct analysis, with significant benefits. This work demonstrates the effectiveness of a rapid microscopic investigation performed with the laser scanning confocal microscope. This tool allows a highly informative, easy and low cost microscopic examination.
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