IAP 2001, Presentation 3:


Jean Tétreault1, Emilio Cano2, Maarten van Bommel3, and David Scott4

Canadian Conservation Institute 1
Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Metalúrgicas (CENIM) 2
Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage 3
Getty Conservation Institute 4


For the last 12 years, there has been an increasing interest on indoor air quality in museums and archives. Sensitive monitoring techniques have been developing for carbonyls and a better information are available on the typical off-gazing of construction products. However, some object - pollutant interactions were not yet fully investigated. Many data refer to the effect of acetic acids to metals but formic acid was less covered in conditions which interest museums and archives.

The aim of this project is to gain a better understanding of the tendency of copper and lead to corrode into a few months period in rich carbonyl environments frequently observed in display or storage settings. The research has two parts:

  1. Determination of the non observable adverse effect level (NOAEL) of formic acid for copper and lead at 54 and 75% RH at 21°C

  2. Determination the effect of presence of many different carbonyls on the corrosion rate and on the NOAEL.
Humid carbonyl environments are generated by carbonyl-water-salt mixtures in glass jars. Metal coupons were suspended above the mixtures for 135 days. The corrosion of metals will be investigated by weight gain measurement, colour measurement and XRD with low angles. Based on the XRD results, the mechanism of corrosion by carbonyls and strategies for controlling the damage to copper and lead in enclosure can be suggested.

Jean Tétreault (*), Canadian Conservation Institute, 1030 Innes Road Ottawa, Ont. K1A 0M5, Canada
E-mail: jean_tetreault@pch.gc.ca

Dr. Emilio Cano, Departamento de Ingeniería de Materiales. Degradación y Durabilidad, Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Metalúrgicas (CENIM), Avda. Gregorio del Amo 8, 28040 Madrid E-mail: ecano@cenim.csic.es

Maarten von Bommel, Netherlands Institute for cultural Heritage, Gabriel Metsustraat 8, 1071 EA, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
E-mail: maarten.van.bommel@icn.nl

Dr. David Scott, Getty conservation Institute, 1200 Getty Center Drive, suite 700, Los Angeles, California, 90049-1684, USA
E-mail: dscott@getty.edu

(*) Author to whom correspondence may be addressed

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