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Researchers patent a process of ornamental stone consolidation to make it more resistant

The University if Granada has patented a product and an implementation method to obtain the activation of the microorganisms that produce the carbonates found in construction and ornamental materials. Thanks to this, the formation of a calcium carbonate cement is induced, which can be used to protect and consolidate in situ surfaces made of construction and ornamentation lime materials in general, as well as natural stone too.

The people responsible of this patent are the members of a research group of the Microbiology Department and the Mineralogy and Petrology Department of the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Granada. French company Bordeaux Architectural Antique, located in Bordeaux, works in the antique architecture and sculpture restoration sector and is interested in this patent. As a result of this, an ‘agreement of material and know-how transfer’ has been signed between this company and the University of Granada. These researchers have provided them with the product, as well as assessment to carry out trials to check the efficiency of the product and the method in their own samples. In fact, company Bordeaux Architectural Antique has already asked for an authorization to apply this product in historical buildings. So far they have obtained the suitable permission from Le directeur régional des affaires culturelles (regional manager of cultural matters) to carry out trials in the Cathedral of San Andres in Burdeos, although so far the date of the work commencement is unknown. In addition to obtaining the patent for the consolidation of ornamental stone, this Granada-based research group has started a study that aims to lower the implementation price of this patented mean of cultivation. They intend to analyse other useful products which produce the same results but at a lower cost. Moreover, they want to study how much the time of treatment can be reduced but getting these same results, as this would reduce the costs related to the implementation of the cultivation mean. They have been recently awarded with a Project of Excellence by the Innovation, Science and Enterprise Ministry of the Andalusian government Junta de Andalucía in order to continue with their current research.

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