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The Museum Environment - 2nd Edition - ISBN: 9780750612661, 9781483102719

The Museum Environment

2nd Edition

Author: Garry Thomson
Editors: Andrew Oddy Derek Lintrum
Paperback ISBN: 9781483109053
Hardcover ISBN: 9780750612661
eBook ISBN: 9781483102719
Imprint: Butterworth-Heinemann
Published Date: 1st January 1986
Page Count: 312
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The Museum Environment, Second Edition deals with the behavior and conservation of the various classes of museum exhibit. This book is divided into six sections that provide museum specifications for conservation. This text highlights the three contributing factors in the deterioration and decay of museum exhibits, namely light, humidity, and air pollution. Each section describes the mechanism of deterioration and the appropriate “preventive conservation”. The changes in this edition from the previous include the electronic hygrometry, fluorescent lamps, buffered cases, air conditioning systems, and data logging and control in historic buildings. This book is of great value to conservation researchers and museum workers.

Table of Contents

Light Part I Surface Deterioration

Light and Heat Energy

The Spectrum

The Basic Light Sources

Colors and Materials which Change

Damage Caused by UV and Visible Radiation

UV Radiation and How to Deal with it

Measuring UV and Visible Radiation

The Reciprocity Law

Controlling Visible Radiation

Reducing Illuminance

50 Lux — Artificial Light

Diffusion of Light

200 Lux — Daylight and Artificial Light

Conservation Lighting Specifications

Treatment of Windows

Angle at which Light Falls on Exhibits

Reducing Time of Exposure

A Suite of Exhibition Rooms


Control of Temperature

Lighting for Professional Photography, Television and Restoration

Electronic Flash

Color Rendering

The Measurement of Color

The Lighting Situation and the Process of Seeing

Humidity Part I The Importance of Humidity

Measuring the Humidity in the Air

The Wet-and-Dry-Bulb Hygrometer

Electronic Hygrometers

Non-Mechanical Hygrometers

Understanding the Hygrometric Chart

Response of Museum Material to RH

Best RH for Moisture-Containing Absorbent Materials

Climate Inside and Outside the Museum

Condensation and the Dew Point

Humidity Control

RH Control in a Room

The Humidistat

Humidifying Equipment

Dehumidifying Equipment

Room RH Control: Maintenance and Air Circulation

Packaged Air-Conditioning Units

Ducted Air Conditioning

RH Control in a Closed Case — Buffers

Silica Gel in Packing Cases

Exhibition Cases

The Buffered Case: Towards a Practical Solution

RH Control in a Closed Case — Use of Salts

Mechanical RH Stabilization in Cases

Future Development of Exhibition Case Stabilization

RH is Often a Matter of Compromise

Historic Buildings Closed in Winter and Churches

Improvisation and RH Control

Humidity Control in Archaeology

Air Pollution Part I The Problem


Particulate Concentrations Today

New Concrete Buildings

Removal of Particulates

Electrostatic Precipitators (Electro-Filters)

Gaseous Pollution

Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)

Damage Caused by Sulfur Dioxide

Glass and Sulfur Dioxide

Effects of Sulfur Dioxide on Lichens and Mosses


Effects of Ozone

Nitrogen Oxides

Effects of Nitrogen Dioxide

Levels of Ozone and Nitrogen Dioxide Likely to be Encountered


Pollution through Storage Conditions

Removal of Gaseous Pollutants

Fire Extinguishers

Sound and Vibration

Light Part II Spectral Curves

Sun and Sky

Lamps and Control Equipment

Measuring UV

Luminous Efficiency and the Light Meter

Some Basic Light Units

Visual Performance

Luminance and Subjective Brightness

The Blue Wool Standards

Damage Versus Wavelength

Heat Radiated from Light Sources

Activation Energy

The Primary Photochemical Reaction

Placing a Color on the CIE Chromaticity Chart

The Color Rendering Calculation

Color Rendering and the Black Body Convention

Choosing a Fluorescent Lamp


Humidity Part II The Standard Hygrometric (Psychrometric) Chart

The Classical Air-Conditioning Operation

A Museum Air-Conditioning System


Heating and Cooling Loads


External Design Conditions

Dimensional Changes Caused by RH Variation

Outdoor Climate and Response of Objects Indoors

Does Constant RH Keep Dimensions Unchanged at all Temperatures?

Effect of People on RH and Temperature

Use of the Air Moisture-Content Scale

The Closed and Buffered Museum Case

Hygrometric Half-Time

Materials Useful as Buffers

Penetration of Oxygen and Water Vapor through Plastic Films

Air Pollution Part II Plotting the Size Distribution of Particulates

Choice of Particulate Filter

Efficiency of Activated Carbon Filters

Room Air Cleaners

Measuring Concentrations of Pollutants in Museums

The Fate of Sulfur Dioxide in the Atmosphere

The Formation of Ozone

Computers in Environment Control

Data Logging

Future Trends in Environmental Control

Appendix: Summary of Specifications




No. of pages:
© Butterworth-Heinemann 1986
1st January 1986
Paperback ISBN:
Hardcover ISBN:
eBook ISBN:

About the Author

Garry Thomson

About the Editors

Andrew Oddy

Derek Lintrum

Ratings and Reviews