The first scan

Here it is, the long-awaited first scan from Operation Night Watch! This is the first of a total of 56 scans.

close up We’re scanning the Night Watch millimetre by millimetre using a macro X-ray fluorescence scanner. This instrument uses X-rays to analyse the different chemical elements in the paint, such as calcium, iron, potassium and cobalt.

scan Here you can see the cobalt map of this first scan. Did you know cobalt comes from the pigment smalt, a blue glass that Rembrandt often used?