Home > Books, News & Views, Science > Mark Andersen Disputed Walter McCrone. Substantiated?

Mark Andersen Disputed Walter McCrone. Substantiated?

December 11, 2011

rogersbookIt is widely reported that Mark Andersen, who worked for Walter McCrone, examined the fibers using laser microprobe Raman spectrometry and found that what McCrone thought was (inorganic) paint was in fact an organic substance. But there does seem to be a lack of substantive citations that accompany this reporting. This has led a reader, Andres, to ask, “where can i find Mark Anderson report???”

There was no “report,” as far as I know. Ray Rogers is often quoted from a letter to  the editor of Skeptical Inquirer, published in Volume 29.3, May / June 2005; there is no reason to distrust this. This offers us an admittedly inadequate explanation for why there may be no report. The letter reads, in part:

So, Joe, should I suppress the information, as Walter McCrone did the results from Mark Anderson, his own MOLE expert?

In his book, “A Chemist’s Perspective on the Shroud of Turin,” Rogers explains on page 60:

Raman spectrometry is much like IR spectrometry: however, it sees different motions of the chemical functional groups. It provides a good complement to IR Unfortunately. we could not make the observations in Turin, but fibers from the tape samples could be analyzed in the US.

Joan Rogers identified suitable fibers on the tape samples and prepared them for analysis. She took tapes, fibers from non-image areas, and fibers from image areas to Instruments SA, Inc., in Metuchen, N.J. in December 1979, The samples were analyzed by Dr. Fran Adar. Similar samples were analyzed by Mark Anderson, McCrone’s MOLE expert in January 1980.

Anderson observed that most of the red flecks on the Shroud “bubbled up and turned black" when he hit them with the laser beam. This was an entirely different response than he got from authentic hematite crystals. He said it “acted like an organic phase" (21 January 1980). Walter McCrone refused to accept those observations. If he wanted the image to be painted with hematite, no conflicting observations would be allowed. (emphasis mine)

It was easy for the microprobes to detect the Mylar backing on the sampling tapes. But no quantitatively significant Raman spectra could be obtained from any of the samples. There was no evidence for any chemical products from Saponaria officinalis or any other coating on image fibers.

UV and visible spectrometry would not see significant differences among the carbohydrates. The -Oil vibrational slates of all of the carbohydrates and water are very broad and intense, and neither JR nor Raman spectrometry could distinguish among them. we were not looking for trace carbohydrate impurities, we were looking for painting-type impurities on the cloth.

All of the observational methods agreed that no pigments. normal painting vehicles, or natural exudations (other than the blood) had been added to the cloth after its production. The image on the Shroud of Turin is not a painting. No foreign materials were added to the cloth in image areas.

See Fact Check « Shroud of Turin Blog

Categories: Books, News & Views, Science
  1. December 11, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    The name is Mark Andersen, not Anderson.

  2. Episcopalian
    December 11, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    I stand corrected. Thanks.

  3. Andres
    December 13, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    so if there is no report, where did Anderson say that??

  4. Andres
    December 13, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    sorry : Andersen

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