IRG/WP 10-20441

Impact of climate change on wood deterioration - Challenges and solutions for cultural heritage

2010 - C Brischke, A O Rapp, M Hasan, R Despot

Deterioration of wood in cultural assets follows the same physiological mechanisms as in modern structures. Therefore rules and data for prediction of service life derived from old wooden structures can be used to model the service life of recent wooden structures and vice versa. The latter is done in this paper: From experimental test set ups in the field spread over Europe, climatic data, wood temperature, wood moisture content, and decay rates recorded for several years were correlated and used for mathematic modelling of decay. On that data basis a first attempt is made to quantify the influence of global warming on wood decay rates for different regions and scenarios, valid for both: wood in modern and historic structures. Against this background conservation of cultural heritage is increasingly challenging and methods are sought to allow historic structures to survive without severe modifications in design, but also with limited use of preservatives. How moisture monitoring can contribute to this purpose is shown on the example of the Echo pavilion in Maksimir Park, Zagreb, Croatia.

Keywords: Climate change, cultural heritage, double layer test, global warming, material climate, moisture monitoring, wood moisture content, wood temperature

Conference: 10-05-09/13 Biarritz, France

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