We have two profilometers, which are tools used for mapping surface topography and texture.  These data can be used to track how the surfaces of our samples change over the course of an experiment.  Does treatment or weathering cause the surface to become, more rough? pitted? cracked? warped?


Elizabeth Salmon measuring the surface roughness of a brick sample using the Keyence optical light profilometer.

Keyence VR-3200

The Keyence is very user friendly profilometer that uses an optical light.  The interface makes it possible to collect and analyze a range of  data including optical images, height maps, 3D images, and roughness measurements of designated areas or lines.  The data can be exported to excel for further handling.  A sample that is two inches square takes less than three minutes to scan.

Keyence profilometer data from a sample provided by Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument









Research associate using Solarscan system to collect data on four samples.

Solarius Solarscan System

The Solarius Solarscan System is the older of our two profilometers.  This instrument uses a laser to collect surface profile data, and reports images and numerical values.  The computer has been set up to allow remote access and driving.  Scans can take four to eight hours.




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National Center for Preservation Technology and Training
645 University Parkway
Natchitoches, LA 71457

Email: ncptt[at]nps.gov
Phone: (318) 356-7444
Fax: (318) 356-9119