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Scanner XRF for 2D elemental mapping imaging for Cultural Heritage

Project Description and Objectives

The goal of the research is to build a scanner XRF for 2D elemental mapping imaging for Cultural Heritage that is composed of a X-Z scanner motors system, an XRF spectroscopic system (X Ray tube, detector multichannel and electronics), a laptop computer. All the system should weigh less than 4 Kilograms (excluded the tripod) and must be capable of fulfilling a 20X20 square centimetres area in 8 hours of work. XRF has been widely used for non-destructive, fast and versatile technique for composition material analysis. The application of this technique has been adopted in many different areas such as environmental sciences, biology, forensic sciences and mainly in CH. Lately the newest field of research in XRF is the 2D elemental mapping imaging with very good position resolution and sensitivity to trace elements and with capability to scan areas up to several square centimeters. Already a system (M6 Jetstream of Bruker) is in the market, but it has been demonstrated that the drawbacks of the system are still many. The most important are the price, the weight of the system and the very long time acquisition. Therefore, it is still a matter of research how to perform XRF 2D elemental mapping imaging with a portable system and with a much lower price. This is not simply a matter of engineering. Much work must be done to reduce the acquisition time by bettering the electronics of the detector, much work must be done in spectrum fitting strategies to reduce the number of channels in the multichannel and last but not least much work must be done in the 2D imaging reconstruction such as to reduce to a minimum the number of necessary acquisitions.

Expected Results: The work will therefore obtain results regarding: spectrum fitting research, switching from step motors to continue motors for synchronization research, 2D imaging reconstruction research. The skills needed to fulfil the required work are multidisciplinary: mechanical engineering knowledge, software engineering knowledge, X Ray spectroscopy knowledge, 2D reconstruction knowledge and CH knowledge.

Apply the new system to specific case studies starting from the research work on cuneiform tablets carried out by Tel Aviv University. The equipment will be used also in the study in situ of painted surfaces.

Type of Contract and Benefits

The selected ESR 3 will be offered a full-time 36 months employment contract by the University of Rome La Sapienza (UNIROMA1)

Living Allowance (LA) = € 3318,37 per month corresponding to the monthly salary for the fellow before any deductions: contributions of both employers and employees to social security, pension, taxation.
Family allowance (FA) = 500€ per month. The LA will be paid only if the recruited ESR has a family* status at the time of recruitment.
Mobility Allowance (MA) = 600€ per month. The MA is a contribution to household, relocation and travel expenses.

*"Family" means persons linked to the researcher by marriage (or a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the legislation of the country where this relationship was formalised) or dependent children who are actually being maintained by the researcher.

Doctoral Degree

ESR3 will be awarded a joint Double Doctorate degree by the Ben Gurion University of the Negev Desert (BGU).

ESR3 research project will involve a secondment to the Ben Gurion University of the Negev Desert (BGU). Additional Secondments to ED-ARCHMAT Beneficiaries and/or Partners could be planned according to ESR3 research needs.

Eligibility Criteria

Main Eligibility criteria are indicated in section ADMISSION RULES

ESR 3 Additional Eligibility Criteria
One of the following certificates of English language knowledge, regardless of the date of obtainment:
IELTS with a minimum score of 5.0;
One of the language certificates recognized equivalent to IELTS 5.0 by the Foreign Languages Centre and detained at the webpage: or a declaration of having a Ba. and/or M.Sc. degree issued by a University in which courses are taught in English, i.e. "The medium of instruction was English". Certificates not included in the list above will not be accepted.
Valid GRE® General Test, possessed by the application deadline.

The start of the PhD Programme at BGU is 1st November 2018 and candidates should arrive at BGU by October 14th 2018 at the latest.

Doctoral Training Programme: the minimum stay at Ben Gurion University of the Negev for being awarded the PhD Title is 18 months and the secondment periods must comply with this.

Candidates are required to meet the following criteria detailed at the following link:

All these requirements should appear on the student personal page in order to be admitted to the final exam.

Please note the local requirements for doctoral studies at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, as specified in the following link:, including mandatory credits, progress reports, and the appointment of a Graduate students' Committee of the Kreitman School.

ESR3 Specific Requirements

Master (2nd cycle equivalent according to the Bologna Process) Degree issued by an officially recognized academic institution which grants admission to PhD programmes in the country of issuance in one of the following fields: Sciences, Engineering, Computer Sciences.

Foreign academic degrees and diplomas will be validated and recognized by the authorized personnel of the University of Rome La Sapienza and and Ben Gurion University of the Negev Desert before enrolment in the double PhD degree.

Application Deadline

The deadline for the online submission of completed application forms available under section APPLICATION of the ED-ARCHMAT website is 15th July 2018.

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