Corrosion and Conservation of Cultural Heritage Metallic Artefacts

Corrosion and Conservation of Cultural Heritage Metallic Artefacts

1st Edition - July 31, 2013

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  • Editors: P Dillmann, D Watkinson, E Angelini, A Adriaens
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9781782421542
  • eBook ISBN: 9781782421573

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The conservation of metallic archaeological and historic artefacts is a major challenge whether they are ancient bronzes or relics of our more recent industrial past. Based on the work of Working Party 21 Corrosion of Archaeological and Historical Artefacts within the European Federation of Corrosion (EFC), this important book summarises key recent research on analytical techniques, understanding corrosion processes and preventing the corrosion of cultural heritage metallic artefacts.After an introductory part on some of the key issues in this area, part two reviews the range of analytical techniques for measuring and analysing corrosion processes, including time resolved spectroelectrochemistry, voltammetry and laser induced breakdown spectroscopy. Part three reviews different types of corrosion processes for a range of artefacts, whilst part four discusses on-site monitoring techniques. The final part of the book summaries a range of conservation techniques and strategies to conserve cultural heritage metallic artefacts.Corrosion and conservation of cultural heritage metallic artefacts is an important reference for all those involved in archaeology and conservation, including governments, museums as well as those undertaking research in archaeology and corrosion science.

Key Features

  • Summarises key research on analytical techniques for measuring and analysing corrosion processes
  • Provides detailed understanding of corrosion processes and corrosion prevention
  • Discusses on-site monitoring techniques


All those involved in archaeology and conservation, including governments and museums, as well as those undertaking research in archaeology and corrosion science

Table of Contents

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    Series introduction

    Volumes in the EFC series

    Chapter 1: Introduction: conservation versus laboratory investigation in the preservation of metallic heritage artefacts

    Part I: Conservation issues: past, present, future

    Chapter 2: Conservation, corrosion science and evidence-based preservation strategies for metallic heritage artefacts


    2.1 Introduction

    2.2 The structure of conservation research and practice

    2.3 Conservation in practice

    2.4 Corrosion control for conservation practice

    2.5 Conservation and corrosion science in partnership

    2.6 Preservation of heritage metals

    2.7 Conclusion

    Chapter 3: Atmospheric corrosion of heritage metallic artefacts: processes and prevention


    3.1 Introduction

    3.2 Historical perspectives on corrosion

    3.3 Air pollution effects in the twentieth century

    3.4 Current effects of air pollution on corrosion

    3.5 Indoor environments and recent developments in standardisation

    3.6 Future trends

    3.7 Conclusion

    Part II: Analytical techniques for the study of cultural heritage corrosion

    Chapter 4: Analytical techniques for the study of corrosion of metallic heritage artefacts: from micrometer to nanometer scales


    4.1 Introduction

    4.2 Methodology

    4.3 Morphology observation

    4.4 Composition analyses

    4.5 Structural characterisation

    4.6 Nanoscale investigations

    4.7 Conclusion

    Chapter 5: The use of metallographic and metallurgical investigation methods in the preservation of metallic heritage artefacts


    5.1 Introduction

    5.2 Methods for sampling artefacts

    5.3 Metallographic examination of microstructure features

    5.4 Successful uses of metallography and metallurgy to aid preservation

    5.5 Conclusion

    Chapter 6: Analysis of corroded metallic heritage artefacts using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS)


    6.1 Introduction

    6.2 Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) fundamentals

    6.3 Applications of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) on the analysis of corroded archaeological artefacts: corroded metal threads

    6.4 Depth profiling of copper-based decorative artefact

    6.5 Analysis of corroded Punic coins

    6.6 Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF) analysis of Roman silver denarii

    6.7 Conclusion

    Chapter 7: Electrochemical measurements in the conservation of metallic heritage artefacts: an overview


    7.1 Introduction

    7.2 Equipment for electrochemical techniques

    7.3 Potential measurements

    7.4 DC techniques

    7.5 AC techniques

    7.6 Conclusion

    Chapter 8: Electrochemical analysis of metallic heritage artefacts: time-lapse spectroelectrochemical techniques


    8.1 Introduction

    8.2 The electrochemical cell (eCell)

    8.3 Monitoring the stabilization process of cupreous artefacts

    8.4 Monitoring the formation of a protective lead coating

    8.5 Conclusion

    8.6 Acknowledgements

    Chapter 9: Electrochemical analysis of metallic heritage artefacts: voltammetry of microparticles (VMP)


    9.1 Introduction

    9.2 Electrode configuration

    9.3 Electrochemical processes

    9.4 Voltammetry of microparticles (VMP) and metal corrosion

    9.5 Studies on corrosion processes

    9.6 Applications for archaeometry, conservation and restoration

    9.7 Conclusion

    Part III: Specific alteration processes

    Chapter 10: Artistic patinas on ancient bronze statues


    10.1 Introduction

    10.2 Studying and characterizing patinas

    10.3 Case studies: the Giambologna statues of the University of Genoa, and the Angel of Calcagno family grave from the Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno (Genoa, Italy)

    10.4 Conclusion

    10.5 Acknowledgements

    Chapter 11: Ancient silver artefacts: corrosion processes and preservation strategies


    11.1 Introduction

    11.2 History of ancient silver

    11.3 Corrosion of Silver

    11.4 Morphology of atmospheric corrosion layers on silver

    11.5 Silver embrittlement

    11.6 Cleaning, anti-tarnishing and protection

    11.7 Conclusion

    Chapter 12: Underwater corrosion of metallic heritage artefacts


    12.1 Introduction

    12.2 Degradation processes and conservation strategies

    12.3 In-situ preservation of artefacts

    12.4 Conclusion

    Chapter 13: Long-term anoxic corrosion of iron


    13.1 Introduction

    13.2 General methodology

    13.3 Characterisation of the corrosion system: from the environment to the archaeological remains

    13.4 Thermodynamic modelling

    13.5 Corrosion behaviour: understanding the mechanisms

    13.6 Estimation of the corrosion rate

    13.7 Conclusion

    Chapter 14: Reactivity studies of atmospheric corrosion of heritage iron artefacts


    14.1 Introduction

    14.2 Previous studies of corrosion diagnosis

    14.3 Studying atmospheric corrosion mechanisms

    14.4 Studying electrochemical reactivity

    14.5 Stability indexes based on rust layer composition and electrochemical reactivity

    14.6 Electrochemical study of ancient artefacts

    14.7 Degradation diagnosis

    14.8 Conclusion

    Chapter 15: Atmospheric corrosion of historical industrial structures


    15.1 Introduction

    15.2 Industrial cultural heritage objects

    15.3 Specific atmospheric conditions

    15.4 Industrial culture heritage material specification

    15.5 Atmospheric corrosion of industrial structures of cultural heritage

    15.6 Degradation of surface treatment of industrial cultural heritage

    15.7 Conclusion

    Part IV: On-site monitoring

    Chapter 16: Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) for the in-situ analysis of metallic heritage artefacts


    16.1 Introduction

    16.2 Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) fundamentals

    16.3 In-situ electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) measurements

    16.4 In-situ electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) measuring campaigns

    16.5 Conclusion

    Chapter 17: Oxygen monitoring in the corrosion and preservation of metallic heritage artefacts


    17.1 Introduction

    17.2 Equipment for oxygen monitoring

    17.3 Measurement of oxygen consumption

    17.4 Measurement of oxygen in the burial environment

    17.5 Conclusion

    17.6 Acknowledgements

    Chapter 18: Issues in environmental monitoring of metallic heritage artefacts


    18.1 Introduction

    18.2 Metrological design of a monitoring system

    18.3 Analogue and digital architectures for monitoring systems

    18.4 Designing a monitoring system based on smart sensors

    18.5 A case study of monitoring system deployment

    18.6 Conclusion

    18.7 Acknowledgements

    Part V: Protection mediums, methods and strategies

    Chapter 19: Alkaline desalination techniques for archaeological iron


    19.1 Introduction

    19.2 Archaeological iron: chloride-induced corrosion

    19.3 Conservation of archaeological iron

    19.4 Desalination

    19.5 The influence of chloride-bearing species on corrosion of iron

    19.6 Deoxygenated alkaline desalination techniques: assessing action and effectiveness

    19.7 Post-treatment corrosion risk

    19.8 Deoxygenated alkali washing in conservation practice

    19.9 Conclusion

    Chapter 20: The use of subcritical fluids for the stabilisation of archaeological iron: an overview


    20.1 Introduction

    20.2 Determining treatment parameters

    20.3 Equipment, process and operation

    20.4 Conservation objectives, treatment rationale and risk management

    20.5 Case studies

    20.6 Conclusion

    20.7 Acknowledgements

    Chapter 21: Monitoring, modelling and prediction of corrosion rates of historical iron shipwrecks


    21.1 Introduction

    21.2 Coralline concretions, corrosion potentials and dissolved oxygen

    21.3 Monitoring

    21.4 Modelling

    21.5 Prediction

    21.6 Conclusion

    21.7 Acknowledgements

    Chapter 22: The role of standards in conservation methods for metals in cultural heritage


    22.1 Introduction

    22.2 Standards commonly used in conservation testing of metals: a survey in metal conservation publications

    22.3 The need to develop or adopt existing standards for coatings testing for cultural heritage metals: the case study of testing Poligen® ES 91009

    22.4 Conclusion and future trends

    Chapter 23: Coatings including carboxylates for the preservation of metallic heritage artefacts


    23.1 Introduction

    23.2 Ultrathin organic films for corrosion protection of metals

    23.3 Self-assembled monolayers of carboxylic acids

    23.4 Conclusion

    23.5 Acknowledgements

    Chapter 24: Sol-gel coatings for the preservation of metallic heritage artefacts


    24.1 Introduction

    24.2 The sol-gel coating process

    24.3 Techniques for sol-gel coating – electrodeposition

    24.4 Case studies on new conservation treatments

    24.5 Conclusion

    Chapter 25: Plasma treatments for the cleaning and protection of metallic heritage artefacts


    25.1 Introduction: requirements of conservators/restorers

    25.2 Plasma treatments for cleaning and protection of artefacts

    25.3 Low pressure plasma

    25.4 Plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition (PECVD) in plasmas containing organosilicon compounds

    25.5 Case studies of use of plasma treatments in cleaning and protection of silver-based artefacts

    25.6 Conclusion

    Chapter 26: Corrosion inhibitors for the preservation of metallic heritage artefacts


    26.1 Introduction

    26.2 Types and mechanisms of corrosion inhibitors

    26.3 Evaluation of inhibitors

    26.4 Corrosion inhibitors used in conservation treatments

    26.5 Conclusion


Product details

  • No. of pages: 640
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Woodhead Publishing 2013
  • Published: July 31, 2013
  • Imprint: Woodhead Publishing
  • Hardcover ISBN: 9781782421542
  • eBook ISBN: 9781782421573

About the Editors

P Dillmann

Dr Philippe Dillmann is Head of the Archaeological Materials Laboratory at the Institut de Recherche sur les Archéomatériaux within the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and the Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique (CNRS/CEA).

Affiliations and Expertise

CNRS/CEA, France

D Watkinson

David Watkinson is Professor of Conservation at Cardiff University, UK.

Affiliations and Expertise

Cardiff University, UK

E Angelini

Emma Angelini is Professor of Applied Physical Chemistry at the Politecnico di Torino, Italy.

Affiliations and Expertise

Politecnico di Torino, Italy

A Adriaens

Professor Annemie Adriaens works within the Department of Analytical Chemistry at Ghent University, Belgium.

Affiliations and Expertise

Ghent University, Belgium

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