Welcome to the new Ph.D. students!


Stefano Centenaro, Neva M. E. Stucchi and Paolo Guzzonato join the Characterization and Protection of Cultural Heritage Materials research group, following the start of a new PhD programme cycle!

Stefano got his Master’s Degree in Materials Engineering at Università di Padova with a thesis on the development of 3D scaffolds mimicking myxoid stroma tumor for testing electrochemotherapy treatments and novel chemotherapy drugs against human breast adenocarcinoma. After, he won a 1-year research grant and acted as research fellow at Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia, studying the chemistry and physics of the Murano’s artistic glass in order to find new strategies for the reuse of artistic glass waste. At our Center, he will work on the artificial simulation of glass degradation phenomena and on the development of protective strategies for the preservation of ancient vitreous materials.

Neva completed her Master’s degree in Conservation Science and Technology for Cultural Heritage at Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia in 2021. Her research thesis aimed to the development and application of silica nanoparticles based consolidants for the conservation of sandstones and concretes. At the CCHT, she will work on synthesis and application of compounds for the conservation of Mosaic tesserae.

Paolo has a Master’s Degree in Sustainable Chemistry and Technologies and he is interested in the development of bio-based smart materials from waste biomass. He addressed this topic in his thesis, focusing mainly on the study of fractionation processes for the valorization of technical lignin. At the CCHT, he will work on the characterization, digitization and protection of ancient manuscripts.

A big welcome to our new colleagues at CCHT!

Our Ph.D. candidates at the Italian Society of Chemistry National Congress 2021


During the SCI2021 - XXVII National Congress of the Italian Society of Chemistry (Società Italiana di Chimica), our Ph.D. students had the opportunity to share latest updates on their ongoing projects. Raffaella Lamuraglia, Francesco Abate and Roberta Zanini presented their contributions during the works of the ABC Division (Ambiente e Beni Culturali).

Raffaella led the audience on a journey through her findings on frescoes’ technology at the roman time in Aquileia. By combining petrographic (POM) and microchemical (SEM-EDS) analyzes, she was able to identify the supply quarries of raw materials used to make the mortars and a palette of precious inorganic pigments. The interpretation of the results from a historical-artistic and archaeometric point of view made it possible to hypothesize the location of a Roman residential area in the outskirt of Aquileia, providing new starting points for research.

Francesco shared the first results of his investigations on ancient coins. In particular, he showed how a coin covered with thick soil encrustations can be identified without touching it, using X-Ray Tomography and profitably collaborating with archaeologists. He also explained how XRF and FIB-SEM can work together for a modern diagnostic protocol.

Roberta spoke about Laser Ablation (LA) coupled to ICP-MS as a means of obtaining in-depth elemental imaging, depicting how this powerful technique can come in hand for the study of corrosion process on ancient glasses. She explained the potentiality of using the layer-by-layer elemental maps for investigating how the composition of altered glass changes from the bulk to the surface, thus providing information about the kinetic of the corrosion mechanism.SCI2021 represented an incredible opportunity for Italian and foreigner researchers to meet each other, and share ideas and vision, even if virtually.

This 8-days event has involved more than 2000 people, featuring many keynote lectures from distinguished speakers, like the two Nobel Prizes in Chemistry, Roald Hoffmann and Stanley Whittingham.


A bit of CCHT at the first edition of CERN’s Sparks! – The serendipity forum


The Sparks!Serendipity forum at CERN is an annual two-day multidisciplinary science innovation forum and public event organized by CERN. This year edition was dedicated to Future Intelligence and saw the participation of CCHT director, Dr. Arianna Traviglia.

Sparks! brings together renowned scientists from diverse fields around the world, along with decision makers, representatives of industry, philanthropists, ethicists and the public to bring a novel, multi-faceted approach to addressing some of the big questions of our time.

Sparks! event will become a flagship for CERN's new Science Gateway which is scheduled to open its doors to the public in 2023.

Dr. Traviglia has been invited to share her experience on how technology and humanities can efficiently work together.

For more information and the video replica of the event, please check the Sparks! Forum website.

Robotics, AI and Computer Vision meet Archaeology - RePAIR Project kick-off


The Center for Cultural Heritage Technology is a partner of the new RePAIR Project, officially started on 1st September 2021

RePAIR stands for ‘Reconstruction the Past: Artificial Intelligence and Robotics meet Cultural Heritage’. The aim of the project is integrating cutting-edge knowledge in robotics, artificial intelligence and 3D digitisation for building a robotic infrastructure for the automated digital scanning, recognition and physical reconstruction of shattered archaeological artefacts.

The robotic system will be experimented at the Pompeii Archaeological Park on the frescoes from the Casa dei Pittori al Lavoro (House of the Painters at work), destroyed during the WW2, and from the Schola Armamentarum.

Beside IIT-CCHT and the Pompeii Archaeological Park, the other partners of the project are: Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia (coordinator),  Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (Israel), Associacao do Instituto Superior Tecnico Para a Investigacao e Desenvolvimento (Portugal), Rheinische Friedrich Wilhelms Universitat (Bonn, Germany) and Italian Ministry of Culture. The project has been funded by the Horizon 2020 EU Programme for 3.5M Euros (G.A. n. 964854).

The project has already attracted the attention of national and international newspapers (Le Figaro and Il Sole 24 Ore, among others).

Follow our social media (Twitter and Instagram) to stay update on this and other projects currently running at our center!

Culture & Geopolitics: Dr. Arianna Traviglia at the 2nd Soft Power Conference


Dr. Arianna Traviglia, CCHT-IIT Director, took part at the 2nd edition of the Soft Power Conference organised by Francesco Rutelli and the association Soft Power Club. The Conference was held on 30th and 31st August in Venice.

Preceded by the official message of the Italian Premier Mario Draghi, enriched by contributions from the President of the European Parliament David Sassoli, the European Commissioner for Economy Paolo Gentiloni, the President of the Italian Senate Elisabetta Casellati, the Italian Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini, and the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs Luigi Di Maio, this event has taken to the global attention the centrality of the ecological transition and role of culture in the Italian multilateral agenda. The talks of former President of #UNESCO Irina Bokova, the Regional Director at UNESCO Ana Thompson-Flores and General Roberto Riccardi, commander of the Italian #Carabinieri Art Squad, have highlighted the centrality of Soft power for the safeguard of cultural heritage and the sustainable future of #endangered #heritage sites.

The Soft Power Club is an association that aims to define shared messages and pragmatic objectives, placing itself as a forum for maximum inclusiveness, with an international and intercultural scope. The Club boasts numerous members of international importance.

Dr. Traviglia participated as invited speaker for the session The power of Culture and Creative Industries For additional information, check the Soft Power Club website

Dr. Arianna Traviglia is awarded with 2021 Tecnovisionarie® prize


We are very proud to announce that our director, Dr. Arianna Traviglia, has won the 2021 Tecnovisionarie® Award.

Tecnovisionarie® is an international prize, which is annually awarded by the Women&Tech association to women that in their professional activity have shown a clear vision in terms of social impact, transparency and ethics.

This year, Tecnovisionarie® awarded a total of 13 women that represent the excellence in the field of Artifical Intelligence. Among them, Arianna Traviglia has been awarded for her pioneristic efforts in the application of Artificial Intelligence to Cultural Heritage.

During the ceremony, held online on June 10th, the prize has been ‘virtually’ delivered to Arianna by Dr. Barbara Gallavotti, biologist, scientific journalist and science communicator, part of the scientific committee of di Museo Nazionale Scienza e Tecnologia and author of the popular tv program Superquark.

For this special occasion, Rainews24 (the main italian all-news tv channel) dedicated a personal interview to our director. You can watch it HERE.

For more information about the prize and its current and past winners, please visit tecnovisionarie.eu.

Dr. Artesani and Dr. Ljubenovic participated at the Virtual SPIE O3A Conference


Dr. Alessia Artesani and Dr. Marina Ljubenovic partecipated as speaker at the SPIE O3A Conference.

During the live sessions of the virtual conferences, Alessia discussed the results of Terahertz Time-Domain Spectroscopy (THz-TDS) imaging carried out on cultural heritage assets. Hyperspectral THz images are corrupted by several degradation effects and their processing pose therefore major challenges. In this work, the limits of THz-TDS are addressed by a twofold computational strategy: (i) removal of the surface warping and (ii) application of a fast joint deblurring-denoising approach for image restoration. The reduction of the main degradation effects is illustrated with the aid of experiments conducted on ancient silver coin and a contemporary painting, highlighting the advantages for cultural heritage applications of imaging spectroscopy in the far-infrared frequencies.

Marina introduced a novel fast hyperspectral image deblurring and denoising approach tailored to archaeological applications of remote sensing. Hyperspectral data (recorded by means of airborne or satelliteborne sensors and used to detect buried archaeological deposits) often lack in spatial resolution and contains blurring degradation and noise. The methodology here presented is based on the low-rank properties of hyperspectral images and exploits a sparse data representation linked with the self-similarity characteristics of image patches. As a result, noise belonging to different spectral regions is removed and the spatial resolution of bands increased, thus significantly improving the possibility of detection of yet-unknown buried archaeological sites

Check out the registered presentations and the conference proceeding at: 

"Processing and analysis of THz time-domain spectroscopy imaging applied to cultural heritage"

"Improved detection of buried archaeological sites by fast hyperspectral image deblurring and denoising"

The CCHT under the TV and Newspapers spotlight


Last week,  the Center for Cultural Heritage Technology have had the pleasure to welcome the RAI (the national public broadcasting company of Italy) crew to record a Futuro 24 episode titled “New technologies for cultural heritage”.  Futuro24 is a dissemination format of RaiNews24, the all-news channel of RAI, and focuses on exploring and narrating ongoing frontier research in Italy. 

Through the narration of Andrea Bettini, our researchers had the chance to showcase their current projects both from our venue in Mestre and from the magnificent Museo Correr of Venice, where our Material Science group was doing in-situ data acquisition. 

More details, links and photos inside the news. 

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Welcome to Prof. Žiga Kokalj

Prof. Žiga Kokalj is here to collaborate with the Machine Learning and Computer Vision for Cultural Heritage research group! He is the head of the Department of Remote Sensing of the Institute of Anthropological and Spatial Studies at the ZRC SAZU. His research interests lie in the protection of natural and cultural heritage. He is primarily involved in environmental studies using optical satellite imagery processing and lidar data processing, internet cartography, spatial analyses, and natural processes modelling, especially from the viewpoint of how different human activities influence the environment, both in history and at present. The whole group welcomes Professor Kokalj at CCHT!

Focus Point in The European Physical Journal Plus


We are pleased to announce the opening of Focus Point on the Advances in Hyperspectral Data Processing for Cultural Heritage to be published in The European Physical Journal Plus (Electronic ISSN 2190-5444, IF 3.228 (2019)). 

The goal of this Focus Point is to gather contributions that showcase the most recent advances in hyperspectral image processing applied to artworks and antiquities held at Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums (GLAM) or privately owned. Papers should focus on improving image quality, significance of data results, demonstrating the advantages of the methods on case studies and exhibiting their usability for dissemination to wide public. Potential topics include but are not limited to automatic classification, hidden pattern recognition and multivariate clustering analysis applied on hyperspectral data cubes. This Focus Point intends to promote the collaboration between conservators and scientists working in computer science, giving floor to the dialogue between those different disciplines. Authors are encouraged to submit contributions in the form of research papers, communications, or reviews.

> Guest Editor: Dr. Arianna Traviglia, Dr. Alessia Artesani, Dr. Marco Fiorucci, Dr. Marina Ljubenovic

> Submission Deadline: 31 October 2021

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H2020 NETCHER Updates – Trainings, MOOC and Final Forum


Earlier this month the NETCHER H2020 project held its Final Forum. The two-day online event (1st and 2nd March 2021), organized by the CCHT together with Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, presented the overall results and achievements of the project, final recommendations, research roadmaps and good practices, specifically addressing the issue of communication and awareness raising. The Forum marks the end of the NETCHER H2020 project started 27 months ago and that has seen in the last few weeks our Centre protagonist of multiple training actions.

A first online education programme, the NETCHER Remote Sensing to fight illicit excavation Training (NRST), has been held in January 2021 (January 19st-22nd, 2021) and aimed at training Cultural Heritage professionals in the use of Remote Sensing to identify evidence of archaeological sites’ looting. The NETCHER 3D Reconstruction of Cultural Heritage at Risk Training (NTRCHRT, February 15th-17th, 2021) online programme focused instead on 3D documentation and reconstruction of Cultural Heritage objects at risk to be stolen, trafficked, or damaged.
But it is not all over yet!
Our CCHT team have also developed a free MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) together with Ca’ Foscari University to provide the basics about Cultural Heritage Crimes and the main tools, both legislative and operational, to counter such phenomenon. The online course consists of 4 Teaching Units focused on legislation, art market, Cultural Heritage crime, resources and ethics. The MOOC, opened in March 1st, 2021, will run for four weeks on the EduOpen platform and will be relaunched twice over the next two years.

For further details about the trainings and the MOOC please refer to the NETCHER Project website.

Homa Davoudi attended the 25th International Conference on Pattern Recognition


CCHT’s Post-Doctoral researcher, Homa Davoudi, presented her recent research achievements on ancient document layout analysis at 25th International Conference on Pattern Recognition ICPR 2020 (hold virtually due to the Covid-19, 10-15 January 2021). She presented the result of her work in collaboration with Marco Fiorucci and Arianna Traviglia as a poster, introducing a novel deep sparse coding model for manuscript image representation, which was successfully applied for historical document layout analysis.

Welcome to Francesco Abate and Raffaella Lamuraglia


Francesco Abate and Raffaella Lamuraglia join the Characterization and Protection of Cultural Heritage Materials research group, as Ph.D. students! Raffaella has a Master Degree in Conservation Science and Technology for Cultural Heritage and in her master thesis she evaluated anti-UV and anti-graffiti coatings for contemporary paints in Urban Art. At the CCHT, Raffaella will work in particular on characterization and protection of Roman frescoes. Francesco studied Material Engineering at the Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, and his thesis was focused on the Laser deposition of polymer-based thin films containing encapsulated inhibitor for Conservation of Cultural Heritage. At the CCHT, he will work on the protection of ancient metals. We are happy to welcome Raffaella and Francesco in our group!

Welcome to Sara Ferro


Sara Ferro joins the Machine Learning and Computer Vision of Cultural Heritage research group, as a Ph.D. student! She earned a M.Sc. degree in Control and Automation Engineering and a second level Master Degree in Machine Learning from the University of Padua, Italy. Her research focus is on developing Machine Learning and Computer Vision algorithms for supporting Historical Document Analysis and Ancient Handwritten recognition. The whole group welcomes Sara at CCHT!


Welcome to Luigi Marasco


Today, Luigi Marasco starts his work as laboratory technician at the CCHT! During his B. Sc. in Materials Science, Luigi won an Erasmus+ scholarship and he joined the “Graphene Team” of the Interuniversity Microelectronics Centre (IMEC) in Belgium, where he focused his thesis project on graphene production methods. For his master thesis project he joined the “Graphene Labs” at IIT and he worked on graphene based electrodes for solar cell applications. He joined the IIT family in 2017 as laboratory technician for supporting the scientific staff of the Graphene Labs, where he worked on the production and prototyping of 2D material-based inks and powders for printing and coating. He collaborated in academic and industrial projects focused on the use of 2D materials in composites and energy generation and storage devices, in order to reduce corrosion and enhance thermal, electrical and mechanical performances of the final products. A big welcome to Luigi from all the CCHT research group! 

Francesca Di Turo takes part at the ScienceABC Conference in Rome!


Francesca Di Turo partecipates as speaker at the ScienceABC Conference in Rome (19-22 February, 2020). During the second day of the Conference, she brings the audience attention on the recent archaeometric research carried out at the CCHT lab, discussing the electrochemical study conducted on the corrosion patina of Roman coins found in the archaeological site of Aquileia (NE Italy). The approach sheds light one the manufacturing and the burial history of the collection. Glad the work activates curiosity and interest of all the partecipants!

Marco Fiorucci's contribution at the Machine Learning in Archaeology Conference


Marco Fiorucci introduces the research carried out at the CCHT on Machine Learning application to Cultural Heritage at the 'Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning in Archaeology' Conference in Rome (7-8 November 2019) organised by the European Space Agency (ESA) and the British School at Rome (BSR). Marco talks on the application of Graph Neural Networks (GNNs) to remote sensing and ancient document analysis. The approach sheds light on the potential of GNNs for tackling Cultural Heritage research questions.

Internal Seminar: Dr. Victor Gonzalez, Rijksmuseum (Amsterdam)


Victor Gonzalez, Postdoctoral Researcher of the Rijksmuseum Science Department (Amsterdam), presents today his recent research aims at a better understanding of the ancient synthesis processes of historical pictorial matter, and of the potential degradation mechanisms affecting it within artworks. His communication illustrates the complementarity of chemical data collected at the micro and macro-scales. He highlights structural imaging results obtained via Synchrotron radiation, with special focus on the in-situ formation of crystalline compounds within micrometric paint stratigraphies of Rembrandt’s artworks. He presents further the recent instrumental developments implemented at the Rijksmuseum (Hyperspectral imaging and macro-XRF/XRD) for  chemical imaging of Dutch Golden Age artworks, and the analytical campaign performed on the Woman with a pearl (Vermeer, c. 1665) and the on-going research project carried out on Rembrandt’s Nightwatch (1642). We are pleased to have Dr. Victor Gonzalez with us today!

Arianna Traviglia participates at SingularityU Italy Summit


The CCHT Coordinator Arianna Traviglia takes part at SingularityU Italy Summit (8/9 October in Milan) talking to the public about the technologies for Cultural Heritage conservation. Arianna discussed how modern technologies and cultural heritage can meet for a wider valorization and knowledge. "We talk about cultural heritage, what we are and what we identify ourselves with. It makes us tied to the origins and history. But do we take care of it? " said Arianna Traviglia at the beginning of her speech.

SAVE THE DATE: The secrets of glass in the Venetian lands


The date of the public conference "The secrets of glass in the Venetian lands: tales of history and science"  organised by the IIT Centre for Cultural Heritage Technology in collaboration with the Scientific Areas Library (BAS) and the Department of Molecular Sciences and Nanosystems (DSMN) of Ca' Foscari University has been announced today. The event, part of the International Glass Week 2019 and under the patronage of the Italian National A.I.H.V. Committee will be held on Tuesday 10 September 2019 at the Auditorium of the Scientific Campus of Ca' Foscari, in Via Torino 155 (Venice Mestre). Open to general audience, the conference will consist of a series of dialogues between experts on history and science of glass, and will focus on the technology of glass production in antiquity, its conservation and the way in which it is musealised.

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