Our Laboratory

INSTRUMENTS AND LIBRARY

To ensure that every case is examined with a high level of accuracy, our document laboratory is well equipped with numerous scientific instruments used to examine the documents in question, image processing software, and a large reference collection.

This Includes:

The Video Spectral Comparator (VSC) is an imaging apparatus. It is one of the most important pieces of equipment used to examine disputed documents. The instrument comprises a desktop computer and an imaging device that includes a color charge-coupled device (CCD), video camera, barrier filters, and several radiant energy sources.

A VSC is an imaging device that allows the analysis of the following:

Inks and paper

Visualization of hidden security features

Reveals alterations in a document

Detects erased information

Exposes obliterated writings

Highlights embossed stamps for easier examination

Exposes tampering and retouching

Document Examiner Forensics

An Electrostatic Detection Apparatus (ESDA)  is an important tool for document examiners who retrieve intended writings. This instrument creates an electrostatic image of indented writings, which are developed with charge-sensitive toners. This instrument uses a non-destructive process to examine documents and produces permanent transparencies. 

Signature Forgery Analysis

This equipment is used to examine and decipher indented writing impressions.

Document Examiner Forensics
Digital Microscope—MiScope consists of a combination of a digital movie camera, precision optics, and LED lighting in a microscope. This microscope has 40–140X magnification and is entirely portable with a laptop where images can still be examined and stored. It is also comprised of built-in makers, time stamps, and measurement features.
A Stereomicroscope is an essential instrument used to examine the documents in question. Two optical paths transfer the image from the eyepieces all the way to the final objective lens and the sample/document. This gives a 3D perception when viewing the subject, because one views the sample from two slightly different angles.
Digitally Manipulated Documents

The wide field of view and great depth of focus makes it an ideal instrument for determining the following:

Erasures or alterations by comparing printed matter

The chronological sequence of intersecting strokes

In-depth examination of creases, ridges, or folds in the paper

Identifying the type of pen used for handwriting

Detecting forgeries

Helps demonstrate evidence to others not trained in the use of the microscope

Its construction provides a long working distance between the objectives and the object under observation, which is a distinct advantage of document examination.

Measuring Tools

Measuring tools, such as metric rules, glass alignment plates, calipers, and transparencies, allow the comparison and measurement of the angles, heights, widths, and spacing of handwriting, typewriting, and digitally generated signatures.
Digital Signature Online

Ultraviolet Lamp

The examination of documents using UV light is a non-destructive method. An examination of a document under short and long ultra-violet rays may help detect the following:

Chemical erasures

Alterations

Differentiate between inks and papers

Reveal obliterated materials

Examine delicate stains due to artificial aging

Differentiate different types of paper.

Digital Imaging System

Forensicwriting & Questionedocument services is equipped with digital photography equipment (Nikon 3500 Digital Camera), a Micro-Star (MSI) computer including image processing software (AdobePhotoshop7.0, CorelDRAW, MATLAB 7.10.0, and Picasa), a high-resolution printer, and a scanner.

Supplementary Equipment

F&QS utilizes numerous magnifying devices, including 40x, 30x, and 20x, a lightbox, protractor calipers, and a slope protractor.

Library

Our library consists of various forensic document examination titles and other handwriting reference materials (hard/soft copies), including but not limited to “Questioned Documents” by Albert Sherman Osborn; “Handwriting Identification: Facts and Fundamentals” by Roy A. Huber and A. M. Headrick; “Scientific Examination of Questioned Documents” by Jan Seaman Kelly; “Scientific Examination of Questioned Documents,” revised edition, by Ordway Hilton; “Suspect Documents Their Scientific Examination” by Wilson R. Harrison; “Introduction to Forensic Sciences,” second edition, by William G. Eckert; and “Science in the Courtroom, Report of a Workshop by Science, Technology, and Law Panel, National Research Council.”