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Problems to be solved

Various laser measurement techniques successfully applied in medical and industrial diagnostic sectors have not yet been developed and adjusted for use in the field of conservation of Cultural Heritage. Since each technique implies distinct operation characteristics solving specific problems that cannot correspond to the complexity of diagnostic problems involved in the field of Cultural Heritage their transfer to this new field of application is obstructed from their fragmented applicability. Therefore the concept is to integrate techniques that are based on the same fundamental physical principles in one articulated flexible sensor-device capable to provide the desirable complementarity operating in a standardised and universal mode as a user-friendly on-field transportable system. Structural diagnostics in art conservation lacks novel alternative tools and it is assumed that this essential advance will allow and promote the wide use of laser diagnostic techniques in art conservation discipline enhancing both fields.

Scientific objectives and approach

The work will be based on integrated implementation of advanced non-destructive laser measurement techniques and -laser development to output a novel multi-task sensor for structural assessment thus greatly advancing the state-of-the-art in current methods and practices. The objective is reached through complementary progress of non-intrusive and remote measurement techniques and prototype laser-sensor instrumentation in parallel with continues evaluation, assistance and contribution of existing restoration experts and industrial partners of the consortium. The proposed work is meant to constitute a substantial advance in art structural diagnostics to provide a valuable irreplaceable tool for restoration companies, authorities, and restorers of any European country and beyond.

Expected impacts

The project addresses a long-standing known European problem, which is certainly of major interest for the EU and beyond the frontiers of a single state. The costly and time-consuming procedure of restoration involving risks of subjective diagnosis for intervention and poor maintenance remains of major ethical and practical concern to European restorers, restoration authorities and city councils. The ultimate aim of the project is the realization of non-destructive methodology and instrumentation allowing remote non-contact access to investigate the structural condition of items of Historical and Cultural importance. The resulted diagnostic system aims to succeed universal standards of operation for variety of conservation applications. Thus can refer to historical buildings and monuments fabric, wall paintings in interior and exterior decorations, wood paintings, Museum objects etc. Despite this broad field, the investigation is generalised by focusing into characteristic complex diagnostic problems to allow approaching a standardised inspection procedure. Moreover for first time the standardised structural analysis will improve the mobility of human potential in a pan-European level since the training won’t depend on local-site expertise.