Medieval Russian Cross Pendants: Neutron and Synchrotron Imaging Experience Cover Image

Древнерусские кресты-энколпионы: опыт нейтронной и синхротронной визуализации
Medieval Russian Cross Pendants: Neutron and Synchrotron Imaging Experience

Author(s): Irina E. Zaytseva, Ekaterina S. Kovalenko, Konstantin M. Podurets, Mikhail M. Murashev
Subject(s): History, Archaeology, Middle Ages, 6th to 12th Centuries
Published by: Издательский дом Stratum, Университет «Высшая антропологическая школа»
Keywords: Kievan Rus’; cross pendants; methodology; neutron and synchrotron radiography and tomography;3D models;
Summary/Abstract: The article presents the experience of studying closed Medieval Russian cross pendants using modern nuclear physics methods: neutron and synchrotron radiography and tomography. The work was carried out on the equipment base of the National research center “Kurchatov Institute”. Non-destructive methods of analysis are described. They allow to determine the configuration of encolpions’ internal cavities without opening the leafs, to fix the presence of sacred relics, their nature and distribution in the cavities. The examples of research of 4 encolpions from the rural sites of Suzdal Opolie and Novgorod are given. 3D models of encolpions were built on the basis of tomographic sections. Some show the internal space of the crosses with the location of relics, others show the features of corrosion of the leaves. A special model was created for the black decor (niello) of one of the crosses. Building 3D models provides work with archaeological and museum artifacts at the modern high-tech level: scientific analysis, creation of virtual and real copies, demonstration for the promotion of cultural heritage objects.