Original paper

X-ray powder diffraction clustering and quantitative phase analysis on historic mortars

Piovesan, Rebecca; Dalconi, Maria Chiara; Maritan, Lara; Mazzoli, Claudio


This paper describes the application of cluster analysis to X-ray powder diffraction patterns (XRPD) to define homogeneous groups of mortar-based materials according to their mineralogical composition. For this purpose, the diffraction patterns of 110 samples of mortars from the Temple of Venus (Pompeii, southern Italy) were used to test the method. Rietveld refinement, for quantitative mineralogical phase analysis, was performed on the most representative sample of each cluster. The mineralogical grouping yielded by cluster analysis of XRPD data turned out to be consistent with the petrographic groups.


x-ray powder diffractioncluster analysisfigure of meritrietveld quantitative phase analysishistoric mortarspompeiiarchaeometry