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Biofouling Prevention of Ancient Brick Surfaces by TiO2-Based Nano-Coatings

Department of Construction, Civil Engineering and Architecture (DICEA), Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Enrico Quagliarini
Coatings 2015, 5(3), 357-365;
Received: 27 April 2015 / Revised: 23 May 2015 / Accepted: 22 July 2015 / Published: 28 July 2015
PDF [1084 KB, uploaded 28 July 2015]


Brick constitutes a significant part of the construction materials used in historic buildings around the world. This material was used in Architectural Heritage for structural scope, and even for building envelopes. Thus, components made of clay brick were subjected to weathering for a long time, and this causes their deterioration. One of the most important causes for deterioration is biodeterioration caused by algae and cyanobacteria. It compromises the aesthetical properties, and, at a later stage, the integrity of the elements. In fact, traditional products used for the remediation/prevention of biofouling do not ensure long-term protection, and they need re-application over time. The use of nanotechnology, especially the use of photocatalytic products for the prevention of organic contamination of building façades is increasing. In this study, TiO2-based photocatalytic nano-coatings were applied to ancient brick, and its efficiency towards biofouling was studied. A composed suspension of algae and cyanobacteria was sprinkled on the bricks’ surface for a duration of twelve weeks. Digital Image Analysis and colorimetric measurements were carried out to evaluate algal growth on specimens’ surfaces. Results show that photocatalytic nano-coating was able to inhibit biofouling on bricks’ surfaces. In addition, substrata (their porosity and roughness) clearly influences the adhesion of algal cells. View Full-Text
Keywords: biofouling; brick; façades; nanotechnology; nanocoating; algae; cyanobacteria; cultural heritage; TiO2; photocatalysis biofouling; brick; façades; nanotechnology; nanocoating; algae; cyanobacteria; cultural heritage; TiO2; photocatalysis

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Graziani, L.; D'Orazio, M. Biofouling Prevention of Ancient Brick Surfaces by TiO2-Based Nano-Coatings. Coatings 2015, 5, 357-365.

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