Conference on the Impact of the Indoor Environment on the Preservation of Cultural Heritage

Posted on: 08 November 2010

A conference on the’ Impact of the Indoor Environment on the Preservation of our moveable Cultural Heritage’  was hosted by Trinity College Library and the Department of Geology at the Science Gallery recently (8-9th November).

 EU scientists researching the chemical interactions between cultural artifacts and indoor environmental conditions participated in the event.

Commenting on the significance of the event, TCD’s Keeper of Conservation, Susie Bioletti said:  “This conference comes at a time when we are seeing decreasing funding for museums, archives, libraries, and heritage buildings, and at a time when sustainable solutions are necessary to ensure limited resources are spent well and in a way that does not compromise our fragile environment. The cost of conservation treatment to remedy damage to material heritage is extremely costly. Preventive methods, including safe long-term storage environments, must be developed to provide maximum benefit to largest proportion of our heritage, so we may safeguard it for our future generations. “Key speakers included:

– Dr John Havermans Chair of COST D42 who described the COST network in his paper: COST D42 – Enviart: a European network in conservation research.

– Dr Peter Brimblecombe, a world leader in the study of indoor environments, delivered a paper titled: The impact of climate change on the preservation of our movable heritage.

– Allyson Smith, presented the latest research into the dust which has covered the collection in the Old Library at Trinity College, in her paper titled: Using SEM to characterise dust in the Old Library, Trinity College Dublin 

– Dr Matija Strlič, Chair of a COST Working Group, summarised some of the D42 activities in his paper: Overview of WG2 activities in COST D42: Analysis of heritage materials and environments.

The conference was the final conference of the COST Action D42.  COST is the European Cooperation in Science and Technology intergovernmental network for cooperation in research. COST Action D42 explored the chemical interactions between artefacts and typical indoor environmental conditions and subsequent deterioration.  The research was shared across partners and enabled collaborations.