Using optical coherence tomography to examine the subsurface morphology of Chinese glazes

M. L. Yang, Amy M. Winkler, Jennifer K. Barton, Pamela B. Vandiver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations


Optical coherence tomography (OCT), a new method for ceramics research, is a non-destructive, three-dimensional tomography system, which provides subsurface morphology visualization of samples based on the refractive index or dielectric constant differences in the target specimen. In this study, seven shards from different Chinese kilns of Song and Yuan dynasties (10-14th centuries) were scanned to visualize the subsurface morphology of their glazes. The images revealed unique phase assemblage modes in different samples. The results suggest that OCT may be used to identify ceramics and provide information about their manufacturing technology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)808-821
Number of pages14
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1 2009



  • Ceramic
  • China
  • Glaze
  • Optical coherence tomography
  • Subsurface morphology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Archaeology

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