Examination & Documentation
The first step in any collections conservation process is a detailed examination of the object. How was it made? What materials was it made from? Has it been modified by use? Have there been previous repairs or restorations?
Visual examination and visible light photography are always employed, but examination under microscopes or ultraviolet light, x-radiography, or even CT scanning may be necessary to fully understand an object and record its condition before the correct treatment can be determined.
Scanning electron microscopy (SEM)/
energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS)
X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy