Comparison of the Columnar-Thin-Film and Vacuum-Metal-Deposition Techniques to Develop Sebaceous Fingermarks on Nonporous Substrates,

Stephanie F. Williams, Drew P. Pulsifer, Robert C. Shaler, Robert S. Ramotowski, Shelly Brazelle, Akhlesh Lakhtakia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Both the columnar-thin-film (CTF) and the vacuum-metal-deposition (VMD) techniques for visualizing sebaceous fingermarks require the deposition of a material thereon in a vacuum chamber. Despite that similarity, there are many differences between the two techniques. The film deposited with the CTF technique has a columnar morphology, but the film deposited with the VMD technique comprises discrete islands. A split-print methodology on a variety of fingermarked substrates was used to determine that the CTF technique is superior for developing fingermarks on clear sandwich bags and partial bloody fingermarks on stainless steel. Both techniques are similar in their ability to develop fingermarks on glass but the CTF technique yields higher contrast. The VMD technique is superior for developing fingermarks on white grocery bags and the smooth side of Gloss Finish Scotch Multitask tape. Neither technique worked well for fingermarks on black garbage bags.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-302
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Forensic Sciences
Volume60
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Genetics

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