Special Issue "New Materials and Advanced Procedures of Conservation Ancient Artefacts"

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Materials Science and Engineering".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 February 2023 | Viewed by 5046

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Ion Sandu
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Arheoinvest Centre, Institute of Interdisciplinary Research – Department of Science, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University, 11 Carol I Blvd, 700506 Iasi, Romania
Interests: cultural heritage; environmental protection; forensic science; materials science and engineering; scientific investigation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue is focused on highlighting the most recent contributions in the field of materials and procedures from a broad range of applications, including the conservation of mobile and immobile ancient artefacts.

The main applications are related to materials involved in environmental science and engineering, cultural and natural heritage, architectonic structure and civil engineering, as well as the procedures for the processing and treatment of new materials.

The studied materials can be from the nano to the macro scale, involving alloys, ceramics, composites, polymers, and more. We welcome the submission of a variety of manuscripts, from theoretical approaches (modeling or simulation) to advanced insights into materials and procedures.

For this Special Issue of Applied Sciences, it is my pleasure to invite you to submit reviews and articles in the abovementioned areas.

Prof. Dr. Ion Sandu
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Applied Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

Historical artefacts; 
Archaeometry;
Archeology;
old painting;
architectural monuments;
conservation state;
physical state;
degradation;
deterioration;
preservation;
restauration;
scientific investigation;
X-ray analysis;
Laser cleaning;
UV and IR techniques;
Gas-chromatography;
colorimetry;
thermogravimetry;
compatibility;
feasibility;
authentication;
patrimonial evaluation;
valorization; museums;
nanomaterials;
coatings;
protective layers;
binders;
pigments;
alloys;
ceramics;
composites

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Article
Preservation and Restoration of an Old Wooden Icon with Complex Carved Ornaments, in a Conservation State of Precollapse
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(10), 5073; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12105073 - 18 May 2022
Viewed by 785
Abstract
Wooden icons used in liturgical activities suffer a series of evolutionary deteriorations and degradations over time, due to improper storage and use conditions. The deterioration of the physical state of the structural-functional elements and degradation of the chemical nature of the components often [...] Read more.
Wooden icons used in liturgical activities suffer a series of evolutionary deteriorations and degradations over time, due to improper storage and use conditions. The deterioration of the physical state of the structural-functional elements and degradation of the chemical nature of the components often lead old easel paintings to precarious preservation (almost close to pre-collapse), impossible to use or display as an artifact. In this study was included an old oil-painted icon on a carved linden wood support with fine gilded ornaments, which frames a central icon (“Coronation of Virgin Mary”) and a complex Menaion icon system with iconographic scenes. It was made by an anonymous author and dates back to the late 18th and early 19th centuries. As the icon has a special beauty and an ornamental and iconographic complexity, having a great heritage value, it required the elaboration of an optimal preservation–restoration protocol for the museum exhibition. Initially, the nature of the pictorial materials was determined, and their preservation state was evaluated using the OM, SEM-EDX, micro-FTIR methods, and CIE L*a*b* colorimetry and visible and UV reflectography were used in the evaluation of the wash test and in compatibility studies. Based on the data obtained, the optimal materials and procedures for structural reintegration were selected (including support fillings and filling of gaps), then chromatic reintegration and gilding, followed by final revarnishing, with or without patination additives. Full article
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Article
Risk Assessment of Artifact Degradation in a Museum, Based on Indoor Climate Monitoring—Case Study of “Poni-Cernătescu” Museum from Iași City
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(7), 3313; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12073313 - 24 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 929
Abstract
Preservation of the cultural heritage of museums includes measures to prevent degrading effects induced by air temperature and humidity factors which are difficult to control. The present paper includes a synopsis of values of air temperature and relative humidity characterizing the indoor climate [...] Read more.
Preservation of the cultural heritage of museums includes measures to prevent degrading effects induced by air temperature and humidity factors which are difficult to control. The present paper includes a synopsis of values of air temperature and relative humidity characterizing the indoor climate of the “Poni-Cernătescu” Museum of Iași, Romania for a period of one year. The objective of this research was to describe the museum microclimate and to identify and analyze the degradation risk of museum artifacts in order to study the impact of hygrothermal indoor and outdoor loads on indoor microclimate parameters. To achieve the objective, the following activities were carried out: acquisition of data on the relative humidity and the temperature of indoor and outdoor air; analysis of data with climate analysis tools and statistical methods; and transformation of data into quantitative and qualitative numerical measures of collection decay risks. The collected data enabled us to accurately describe the indoor climate conditions of the analyzed building. The main conclusions of the assessment were that the May–July period represented the interval with the highest degradation risk for all types of cultural assets (wood, leather, photos and paintings); this occurred because of the combination of a high amount of water vapor and high air temperature conditions. Based on charts and tabular data, this study presents the evolution of two parameters of internal microclimate, air temperature and relative humidity, and their correlation with external climate factors. The structural and functional parameters of the museum, the working levels of heating and air conditioning systems, the arrangement, the load, and the typological complexity of the artifacts displayed, were also considered in the analysis. The results obtained enabled us to develop useful recommendations to stabilize climate conditions inside the museum. Specific measures to mitigate the detrimental impact of the analyzed environmental factors are proposed. The results obtained show that in the basement, favorable conditions for mycelium growth occurred. In the summer months, across the entire museum space, the preservation indices were the lowest, from 20 to 25, so suitable conditions for storing the artifacts were not met. Full article
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Article
Microstructural and Chemical Characteristics of Archaeological White Elm (Ulmus laevis P.) and Poplar (Populus spp.)
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(21), 10271; https://doi.org/10.3390/app112110271 - 02 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 802
Abstract
The degradation states of archaeological white elm, with an age estimation of ~350 years, and poplar, with an age approximation of ~1000–1200 years, were studied by means of different chemical and microscopy analyses. Recently cut samples from the respective species were used for [...] Read more.
The degradation states of archaeological white elm, with an age estimation of ~350 years, and poplar, with an age approximation of ~1000–1200 years, were studied by means of different chemical and microscopy analyses. Recently cut samples from the respective species were used for comparison reasons. The chemical composition analysis of the archaeological samples showed significantly low holocellulose values, while the lignin, extractive, and ash contents were considerably high, as compared with the recently cut samples. The Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy also confirmed the changes in the chemical structure of the archaeological elm and poplar samples. The light and scanning electron microscopies illustrated that the erosion bacteria were the main degrading agent in both archaeological elm and poplar, although the hyphae of rot fungi were detected inside the vessel elements of the archaeological poplar sample. Full article
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Article
Study on the Middle Bronze Age Disc-Butted Axe Ornament from Archaeometallurgical Point of View
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(21), 9814; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11219814 - 20 Oct 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 759
Abstract
Our research was conducted on a copper disc-butted axe, with a surface decoration made of a tin-based alloy, which was found east of the Carpathian Mountains in the Moldavian Plateau. This unique piece is thought to belong to the Middle Bronze Age in [...] Read more.
Our research was conducted on a copper disc-butted axe, with a surface decoration made of a tin-based alloy, which was found east of the Carpathian Mountains in the Moldavian Plateau. This unique piece is thought to belong to the Middle Bronze Age in the Western Carpathians—Wietenberg, Suciu de Sus and Otomani–Füzesabony cultures. In order to evaluate the application process and the origin of the ores used, the surface and volume phase variation of the concentration of the metal components of the basic alloy (copper) and of the ornament was analysed using optical microscopy (OM), stereomicroscopy (SM) and SEM-EDX. The archaeometric features, formed both during its use and during its lying in the archaeological site, were identified and later used in archaeometallurgical evaluations and in determining the preservation condition of the two components (axe and ornament) on the surface, interface and in stratigraphic section. Experimental data revealed that, after its casting in porous silicon stone moulds, the object was coated with a thin film by immersion in an easily fusible tin alloy, which included copper as the major alloying component and arsenic and iron as minor components. After finishing the shiny white coat, a beautiful decoration was applied by incision and engraving. Used as a battle axe, it also had a rank function, as it belonged to the community leaders. The data prove the ability of ancient craftsmen to design and process copper alloys to obtain authentic extremely beautiful artefacts, which provide new possibilities to reveal the social and symbolic function of certain ancient bronze objects. Full article
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Article
Determination of the Conservation State of Some Documents Written on Cellulosic Support in the Poni-Cernătescu Museum, Iași City in Romania
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(18), 8726; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11188726 - 18 Sep 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1013
Abstract
An important step in the conservation of old paper documents is the analysis of both the medium and the ink, in an attempt first to determine the extent of deterioration and degradation and then to choose the best preservation and restoration solutions. Our [...] Read more.
An important step in the conservation of old paper documents is the analysis of both the medium and the ink, in an attempt first to determine the extent of deterioration and degradation and then to choose the best preservation and restoration solutions. Our paper focuses on the analysis of three old documents displayed at the ‘Poni-Cernătescu’ Museum in Iaşi City, Romania by optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDX), micro-FTIR spectroscopy and FT-Raman. Thus, the morphology and chemical composition of the paper media and the type of ink, as well as the cellulose crystallinity index were determined. PCA (Principal Component Analysis) was also used while relying on spectra collected by FTIR spectroscopy. We were able to determine the extent of degradation of the documents by corroborating all these findings. Full article
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