Believed to have been copied from the original Greek in about the 10th century, the text of Archimedes' words was scraped off in the 12th century and the parchment reused for a prayerbook. The treatise was lost.
The process of recovering the original text was started in 1998, when the palimpsest was purchased for the purpose of recovering the lost text. Johns Hopkins University and the Rochester Institute of Technology have recovered about 80% of the original text by using digital imaging techniques. But the latest effort at reconstruction has involved the use of a particle accelerator at Stanford Linear Accelerator Center in Baltimore to reveal iron, which will show even the path of the ink which was removed.