Expertises & Contact
We offer independent expert services for global wood identification in the context of trade and wood industry, art history, archaeology, paleontology, etc. The expertise center's services are available to government agencies, industry, NGOs and individuals. Wood analysis is carried out at the RMCA using macro- and microscopic analyses of submitted samples. We can provide analysis on wood samples, plywood, particleboard, fibreboard and charcoal.
Letters and/or samples can be sent to the following address:
Royal Museum of Central Africa
Laboratory of Wood Biology
Leuvensesteenweg 13, 3080 Tervuren
Price: €170 for a single specimen identification. Based on this, the price increases for larger requests.
Price for an on-site expertise: €250 per day
Time: the expertise report for a single wood sample is normally sent after one week from the moment of the sample's arrival in the RMCA. For more complicated requests (fibreboard, furniture items consisting of different wood species, larger collections of wooden objects ...), multiple weeks are needed.
Sample size: For efficient identifications, the dimension of the sample is preferably 2 to 20 cm.
For objects where only a small sample is possible, for instance due to a high cultural value, a splinter of ca. 0,5 cm width and 2 cm length is also sufficient. In the latter case the sample taking from the object is best performed within the RMCA, which diminishes the risk of an impossible identification.
Example of an expertise of a single wood sample.
The wood sample is sent to ENFORCE.
The sample is prepared to begin the analysis. This involves sanding the wood and making microscopic sections.
The characteristics of the wood sample are listed and compared with those of species in the RMCA xylarium and in online databases. The sample is also compared directly with samples of the same genus.
ENFORCE returns a report by email with the family, genus and species name (as far as identification allows) with a substantiated scientific justification.
Contact us about ENFORCE's expertise or research: email@example.com or use the contact form.