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New methods to assess marble and stone cladding

There is no doubt that the use of marble has changed the face of European architecture since ancient times and is still shaping urban facades worldwide.

Industrial Technologies

The EU-funded TEAM project focused on the study of marble deformation, which adds to maintenance costs but also poses significant safety and durability problems. The aim was to develop novel reliable methods for the monitoring of marble consistency over time and subsequently devise appropriate repair approaches. Implementing these measures is expected to significantly reduce maintenance costs across the building industry. Project partners developed a new laboratory-based test method to measure the risk of bowing. The bowing phenomenon is characterised by loss of structural strength, which can lead to deformation and deterioration. According to the new method, marble specimens are exposed to systematic temperature and moisture variations for up to 50 days. During that time, bowing is measured systematically and forms the basis of a generalised evaluation concerning the stone's durability and 'behaviour' in a variety of environments. This is in fact the first method of this nature to provide data for the assessment of stone materials. It is therefore likely to play an important role in the choice of appropriate materials used for cladding on buildings throughout the EU. As such it is particularly appealing to architects, building owners and engineers involved in the construction industry.

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