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Developing Radiation Treatment Methodologies and New Resin Formulations for Consolidation and Preservation of Archived Materials and Cultural Heritage Artefacts (F23032)

CRP at a Glance

The preservation of world cultural heritage is a key issue for maintaining national identity, and understanding the exchanges among civilizations throughout history. Cultural heritage (CH) artefacts that are based on paper, textiles or wood are prone to biological attack under improper conservation conditions. Application of ionizing radiation for the disinfection of CH artefacts has been successfully demonstrated in recent years with participation of museums and libraries. The wider use of this technique requires conclusively establishing that irradiation does not lead to unacceptable changes in the functional or decorative properties of the artefact and its authenticity not compromised. The CRP will focus on evaluating the effect of irradiation on functional properties of base materials of artefact, minor constituents, post irradiation effects and developing appropriate irradiation procedures enabling wider use of the technology.

Restored sculpture on its metallic support, ready to be displayed (October 2014) in the church at Suzannecourt (Haute-Marne, France) - Picture Courtsey: Dr Khôi-Quec Tran, Atelier Régional de Conservation ARC-Nucléart , CEA-Grenoble

CRP Overall Objective

Wider acceptance and use of radiation processing techniques for conservation and consolidation of Cultural Heritage Artefacts.

Specific research objectives

  1. Understand effect of specific irradiation conditions on functional properties of CH artefacts and establish appropriate irradiation methodologies
  2. Develop new radiation curable resins with enhanced compatibility with CH artefacts
  3. Establish appropriate procedures for irradiation of CH artefacts including dose mapping and simulation techniques

Expected research outcomes

Improved conservation methods using radiation processing techniques for conservation and consolidation of cultural heritage artefacts.

Who should join the CRP?

The potential CRP participants should be a stakeholder involved in using radiation technologies for treatment of CH artefacts, potential newcomers who have the intention of initiating such works and other research institutes that can make a technical/research contribution in areas such as simulation techniques for dosimetry, radiation effects on materials, radiation polymer chemists, radiation microbiologists, conservators and restorers.

How to join the CRP?

Please submit your Proposal for Research Contract or Agreement directly to the IAEA’s Research Contracts Administration Section, using the form templates (http://cra.iaea.org/cra/forms.html) on the CRA web site (preferably via email): research.contracts@iaea.org

Incunables Private Collection – control of insects and fungi through radiation technology (Picture Courtsey: Mr Pablo Vasquez, IPEN, Brazil)


Responsible/Contact: Research Contracts | Last update: 23 Dec, 2014