WG1 - Nano and Advanced Materials and Their Applications

R. Giorgi, M. Favaro

The contribution of science to the conservation of Cultural Heritage radically grown up in the last years mainly thanks to the advancements in the knowledge of the physico-chemical composition and properties of the materials constituting the works of art, and to the development of several innovative physical devices and nanomaterials for conservation.

Nanotechnology represents one of the most promising fields in conservation science, providing new materials and solutions to solve old conservation issues. These systems are characterized by scale lengths typical of nanoscience, i.e. below 100 nm in one or more dimensions, and constitute a new platform for conservation of cultural heritage. The dimensions in the nanoscale range and the high surface-volume ratio provide a high reactivity that plays a crucial role in their performance.

As a good example of possible impact of this technology is represented by the use of inorganic-based or hybrid materials for stones and wall paintings conservation that respect the fundamental principle of physico-chemical compatibility between the restoration product and the substrate, granting a long-term stability to the treated works of art.

In the framework of the five projects gathered in the cluster, dispersions of nanoparticles, nanostructured fluids and gels have been inverstigated to consolidate stones, restore wall paintings, remove polymers or clean mural and oil paintings, and de-acidify paper, wood and canvas.

The networking activity within WG1 aims to improve the efforts to develop new materials and nanotech devices that may impact the conservation field both in terms of industrial production and economical gain.