A new dusts sensor for cultural heritage applications based on image processing

Sensors (Basel). 2014 Jun 4;14(6):9813-32. doi: 10.3390/s140609813.


In this paper, we propose a new sensor for the detection and analysis of dusts (seen as powders and fibers) in indoor environments, especially designed for applications in the field of Cultural Heritage or in other contexts where the presence of dust requires special care (surgery, clean rooms, etc.). The presented system relies on image processing techniques (enhancement, noise reduction, segmentation, metrics analysis) and it allows obtaining both qualitative and quantitative information on the accumulation of dust. This information aims to identify the geometric and topological features of the elements of the deposit. The curators can use this information in order to design suitable prevention and maintenance actions for objects and environments. The sensor consists of simple and relatively cheap tools, based on a high-resolution image acquisition system, a preprocessing software to improve the captured image and an analysis algorithm for the feature extraction and the classification of the elements of the dust deposit. We carried out some tests in order to validate the system operation. These tests were performed within the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican Museums, showing the good performance of the proposed sensor in terms of execution time and classification accuracy.

MeSH terms

  • Art*
  • Dust / analysis*
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods*
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted / methods*


  • Dust