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Preventive solutions for Sensitive Materials of Cultural Heritage

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - SensMat (Preventive solutions for Sensitive Materials of Cultural Heritage)

Reporting period: 2019-01-01 to 2020-08-31

Preventive conservation (PC) has emerged as an important approach for the long-term preservation of sensitive cultural heritage (CH), notably for mobile artefacts, those displayed or stored in harsh environments and for small and medium-sized museums. SensMat aims to develop and implement effective, low cost (<20 – 30€ for basic platform), eco-innovative and user-friendly sensors, models and decision-making tools, as well as recommendations and guidelines to enable prediction and prevention of degradation of artefacts as a function of environmental conditions. SensMat is user-driven (inclusion of 19 museums in the project plus survey of 100 more), and the consortium has solid existing results and a strong capacity to mature the sensors, models and decision-making solutions to TRL 7 during the project. Based on multiscale modelling, data management systems, collaborative platforms and sensor communication networks (IoT), museums stakeholders will be informed in real-time of possible dangers to their artefacts, thus reducing degradation risks and costly conservation treatment. Demonstration of the platform in 10 representative case studies in museums, historical buildings, storage sites and workshops will prepare rapid uptake after the project. Knowledge transfer, training, and recommendations of best practices will facilitate standardization, strategy implementation, new policy definition, and wide-scale adoption of the new solution by cultural heritage sites immediately after the project.
During the first reporting period (01/01/2019 - 31/08/2020), consortium members focused the effort working on the design and the development of different SensMat sensors, according to performance, cost, power consumption, platform integration and communication specifications. Preliminary test sessions have been made and additional testing are currently in progress to evaluate and calibrate the operational modes of the devices in relevant environment (WP4). The overall smart monitoring architecture for the sensing system integration in the real environment has been designed and the sensor’s dataflow tests defined (WP5). Data exploitation (DMT and BIM) is currently ongoing by collecting inputs from linked tasks (WP6). All these activities will help to have the best conditions for the future deployment of the SensMat platform on the selected case studies aiming to demonstrate add-values and impacts of the project (WP7).
CNRS provided the table of technical, economic, ergonomic and aesthetical requirements for designing the SensMat platform. This work will helpful the consortium to implement an efficient and easily accessible PC policy in museums (WP2).
Furthermore, USTUTT lead the team work for defining and developing the multi-scale and multi physical modelling to use (WP3), thanks to the information collected in the WP2, to material analysis and environmental simulations. The experimental validation of these models is ongoing with the aim to generate a parametrized model to be used in the DMT.
In parallel, all members of the consortium participated actively to the Management (WP1) tasks, which that are covering the whole duration of the project ensuring the correct implementation of the actions, as scheduled in the DoA.
Dissemination, communication and exploitation activities (WP8) were also involving the partners for supporting:
(i) the participation to conferences and specific events to promote activities and products will be developed within the SensMat project to meet these innovations;
(ii) the spreading of advancements through the project website and the social channels (i.e. project and partners LinkedIn pages);
(iii) the elaboration of a methodology to plan the exploitation work.
Significant impact on practical aspects of the preventive conservation through the identification, analysis and selection of the recommended approaches taking into account usage (combining building environment, easiness of operation…) with the aim to offer the best services.
Significant impact on prototypes design (from sensors up to DMT), manufacturing and beta tests, anticipating tools integration challenges.
The solution as defined today will help future users to envisage more how their involvement would occur.
The impact goes beyond the simple technical aspects because the introduction of the solution will initiate a progressive modification of thinking about common practices. PC actors will envisage the ability to get valuable information without affecting artefacts materials and compromising too much the preventive conservation budget (maintenance).
The solution as defined will help future users to appreciate, for example, easiness and flexibility potentially provided by the solution, they might also reconsider some of their common practices, due to the benefit of the rapidity for corrective actions (ex: climate management system failure / materials degradation).
The information obtained practically in real time will create a new form of relationship between small and medium museums staff at several levels technical and administrative. This will enhance and facilitate exchanges of technical expertise and help them to plan trainings (provision of services by experts with strong experience) and define more accurately the perimeter of responsibilities.
SensMat first results with demonstrator’s descriptions might highlight some potential interactions with other museums facilitating the comparison of their respective plan for corrective actions and running costs of museums and consequently generate the adhesion of some new SensMat users’ groups.
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