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ARCHIVE: Volume 6 - 2015

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Volume 6, Issue 1, March 2015

Research articles

M. Manfredi, G. Bearman, F. France, P. Shor, E. Marengo

Quantitative Multispectral Imaging for the Detection of Parchment Ageing Caused by Light: A Comparison with ATR-FTIR, GC-MS and TGA Analyses

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 3-14
In this paper a non-invasive quantitative multispectral imaging technique was used for monitoring the degradation of parchment caused by light exposure. The parchment samples were aged for 24, 48, 72 and 120 hours in a weather-ometer ageing chamber to simulate a long term sunlight exposure. The effect of light exposure when a ultra violet (UV) filter is used was investigated. The degradation was monitored by using Light Emitting Diode (LED) multispectral imaging coupled to multivariate statistical methods and infrared spectroscopy, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and thermo-gravimetric analysis (TGA) techniques in order to elucidate the mechanism of the parchment ageing and to correlate chemical and imaging data. A description of the effect of light exposure is given: the degradation of collagenous phase and thermo-oxidative phenomena are not involved in the photo-oxidation process and, as expected, the UV radiation accelerates the ageing effects. Moreover the non-invasive imaging methods used for the detection of ageing and the monitoring of the conservation state of the parchment surface were able to identify the non-visible degradation long before possible detection by other common analytical techniques

Keywords: parchment; monitoring degradation; LED quantitative imaging; light ageing.

S.F. Ibrahim, D.M. Essa, F.M. Tera

Fast Production of Artificial Mimic Textile Samples using UV/Ozone Treatment Application in Conservation and Consolidation

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 15-22
The present work deals with evaluating the possibility and the efficiency of applying UV/ozone treatment as a tool for aging three natural fabrics namely; silk, wool and cotton using different exposure times. The work is extended to compare this method with two other techniques of aging by acid hydrolysis and thermal aging taken cotton samples as an example of cellulosic fabrics. The produced aging samples were followed through evaluation of the change in the overall samples surface morphology via x-ray diffraction, tensile strength and air permeability .The obtained results showed that UV/ozone technique can be used successfully as an accelerating technique and applied safely especially for silk and wool samples. Finally, the application of UV/ozone treatment is very useful and practical for the production of mimic archaeological samples that can be applied in conservation and restoration work. Never the less, it is an easy and accelerated method, time saving, economic and environmental friendly technique.

Keywords: Chemical Aging; Thermal Aging; UV/Ozone Treatment;-Tensile Strength; Air Permeability; X-ray Diffraction..

A. Cosentino, S. Stout, C. Scandurra

Innovative Imaging Techniques for Examination and Documentation of Mural Paintings and Historical Graffiti in the Catacombs of San Giovanni, Syracuse

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 23-34
This paper presents scientific and technical examination of two mural paintings and their historical graffiti located in the catacombs of San Giovanni in Syracuse, Sicily. Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI), Infrared Photography, 3D Photomodeling are presented as innovative imaging techniques used to capture significant details of the palimpsest, along with XRF non-invasive point analysis. These methods were performed on the Philadelpheia palimpsest and on the arcosolium of the Madonna. RTI technique was tested as a valid tool to enhance the readability and documentation of the numerous historical graffiti covering some of the murals, which are of high interest to scholars since they are useful to reconstruct the cultural history of the site. The results of the infrared RTI were particularly powerful in their ability to document graffiti on deteriorated surfaces painted with earth pigments. 3D Photomodeling also proved to be a successful and handy tool to document the position of paintings and graffiti in context with one another. The examination of the two paintings was integrated with an analytical study of the palette realized with non-invasive XRF.

Keywords: Reflectance Transformation Imaging; Infrared photography; 3D Photomodeling; XRF; frescoes; catacombs; graffiti.

H. Zhang, T. Hu, X. Huang, J. Wang, H. Jiang, S. Zhang, B. Zhang

Hydrophilic Organosilicone Rubber: The New Organic-inorganic Hybrid Consolidant for Ancient Earthen Architectures

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 35-44
Organic-inorganic hybrid material used as consolidant for earthen relics was synthesized by adding silica nano particles into polysiloxane with the presence of surfactant. This composite material is less hydrophobic than other polymer consolidant, which can avoid the preservation damage caused by the incompatibility between the hydrophobic consolidant and the hydrophilic soil. The tensile strength of the synthesized consolidant is close to other rubbers, which can relieve the stress between consolidant and soil within the expansion-shrinkage process when environmental conditions change. The product was applied on ancient Liangzhu city wall and its effectiveness was examined.

Keywords: Earthen relics; Consolidant; Composite material; Organosilicone; Liangzhu

B. Megna, G. Rizzo, L. Ercoli

Characterization of Serpottas’ Stuccos by Means of Simultaneous Thermal Analysis: Preliminary Results

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 45-50
In this paper the Simultaneous Thermal Analysis (STA), i.e. thermogravimetric and differential thermal analysis, was used as a diagnostic tool to better understand the matter composition of some very valuable artworks [1], the Serpottas’ stuccoes in Palermo. Particularly the STA was used in order to exclude the presence of an unusual calcium-bearing magnesium carbonate, and the thermal data were also used to quantify the magnesite to calcite ratio. The latter was investigated in order to evaluate the amount of magnesium in the lime used as binder as during 17th and 18th century in Sicily magnesium rich lime was indicated as the most valuable binder probably because this kind of lime has a higher plasticity [2]. The data obtained in this work are not conclusive but indicate a way to contribute to the comprehension of this unique work of art composition.

Keywords: Serpotta; Stuccoworks; Simultaneous Thermal Analysis

M.T. Mendes, S. Pereira, T. Ferreira, J. Mirao, A. Candeias

In Situ Preservation and Restoration of Architectural Tiles, Materials and Procedures: Results of an International Survey

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 51-62
In order to aid research, improve preservation actions and develop better options for future interventions it is important to know the preservation materials and procedures adopted throughout the past and especially the ones being adopted nowadays. A survey to specialists working in situ in preservation and restoration of glazed decorative tiles has been performed aiming at getting insight on their type of training, work portfolio, opinions, the current materials and procedures used in the diverse phases of a preservation intervention (diagnosis, cleaning, consolidation, bonding fragments and fixing of glazed layer, volumetric and chromatic reintegration, final coating, resetting of tiles and manufacture of replicas) and the criteria/factors that support the specialists choices.

Keywords: Architectural tiles; Azulejo; In situ preservation; Online survey; Treatment phases

N.A.A. Bader, A. Mahran

Restoration and Preservation of Artistic Elements Applied on Islamic Architectural Façade of Shahin Agha Sebil, Cairo, Egypt

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 63-78
Shahin Agha Sebil one of the most important Sebils in Egypt from during the Ottoman period, contains artistic elements, applied on Islamic architectural façade. The facade had many weathering forms since many centuries, so that many deterioration and degradation phenomena were appeared at load bearing walls, arches, and artistic elements. Some of the stone blocks were completely destroyed, the walls was darkened and severely damaged mainly due to the effects of the air pollution, groundwater, and to the presence of salts which have caused significant detachments of the artistic elements. This paper describes the actual conservation state of the Sebil facade and its deteriorations and degradations. Also, it describes the treatment methods of the Sbil façade and its artistic and architectural elements. Prior to the preservation intervention, the materials were characterized by X-ray Diffraction, X-ray Florescence, and observation of thin section by transmitted Light Optical Microscopy (LOM), Polarized Microscope, Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) attached with Energy-Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDX) to identify their components. After the material characterization, the architectural and fine restoration were carried out corresponds, re-back, replacement and completion of the stone blocks or artistic elements of stone, cleaning, injection grouting, restoration and completion of lost parts of the stone blocks and the mortar between blocks.

Keywords: Shahin Agha; Sebil; Cracks; Limestone; Preservation; Restoration; Replacement.

E. Ghelardi, I. Degano, F. Modugno, M.P. Colombini

An integrated approach to the study of Ri de Pomme, a painting by Julian Schnabel

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 79-92
The painting Ri de Pomme (1988) by American artist Julian Schnabel was recently subjected to an extensive and disputed restoration with polyvinyl acetate (PVAc) paints. To characterize and locate on the painting the materials used in the original and in the repainted areas, we employed several spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques. Fibre Optics Reflectance Spectroscopy (FORS), Micro-Raman, Pyrolysis-Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (Py-GC/MS) and Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS) were used. The original and restoration paint layers were differentiated by a preliminary FORS survey. The pigments were studied with Micro-Raman and the oil binder was characterized by GC/MS. Moreover, the support of the painting, a weathered tarpaulin, was characterized by Py-GC/MS.

Keywords: Julian Schnabel, Pyrolysis-Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry, Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry, Fibre Optics Reflectance Spectroscopy, Contemporary Art

V. Vasilache, M.A. Cretu, L.F. Pascu, M. Risca, E. Ciornea, C. Maxim, I.G. Sandu, C.I. Ciobanu

Dehydrogenases Activity in Sludge Samples of Suceava River

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 92-98
To study the pollution level in water of Suceava river, the dehydrogenases activity of the sediments has been evaluated. Samples have been gathered from three sites, Brodina, Mihoveni and Tisauti. There had been determining the actual dehydrogenases activity and potential one respectively, and on the other side the activity of malat-, α-cetoglutarate-, succinate-, and isocitrate-dehydrogenases respectively, enzymes implied in Krebs cycle of oxidative degradation. Dehydrogenases are components of the enzyme systems of microorganisms, playing an important role in the energy production of organisms. Their role is to oxidize organic compounds through the transfer of two hydrogen atoms. Due to this dehydrogenase activity can be used as an indicator of biological redox systems and also as measure of microbial activity in soil.

Keywords: Dehydrogenases; Sludge; Sediments; Water pollution.

P. Wilfred, A. Maccoll

Local Perspectives on Factors Influencing the Extent of Wildlife Poaching for Bushmeat in a Game Reserve, Western Tanzania

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 99-110
Illegal exploitation of wildlife for bushmeat is a widespread problem affecting many ecosystems especially in the Tropics. Understanding the factors associated with such exploitation may help in the management of the problem by conservationists. Although there is a substantial problem of wildlife poaching in east Africa, the factors that affect its occurrence at a local level are still poorly explored. We interviewed heads of households in 19 villages near a game reserve in western Tanzania–from March to October, 2009–to obtain data on wildlife exploitation. Proximity to the reserve encouraged both wildlife poaching and bushmeat consumption on the northern side of the reserve. Conversely, consumption increased with distance on the eastern side. Communities with higher fish consumption rates had fewer incidents of poaching. Most poaching activities were carried out in the rainy seasons. Both large- and medium-sized wild ungulates especially impala, dik-dik and common duiker were favoured bushmeat species. Problems related to anti-poaching efforts particularly during the rainy seasons should be taken more seriously. Future research and conservation should consider addressing bushmeat poaching with respect to distances from human settlements to the nearest Ugalla Game Reserve boundary.

Keywords: Wildlife poaching; Ugalla Game Reserve; Bushmeat species; Local poaching drivers.

K. Kostrakiewicz-Gieralt

The Impact of Time of Gap Origin on Microenvironmental Conditions and Seedling Recruitment in Abandoned Patches of Rare, Endangered Community- Molinietum Caeruleae Meadow

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 111-124
The effect of the timing of artificial gap formation on microenvironmental conditions and seedling recruitment was studied in Molinietum caeruleae patches dominated by small meadow taxa (patch I), prevailed by tall-growing macroforbs and large-tussock grasses (patch II) and dominated by the willow-shrubs and bordered by trees (patch III). In all patches the microenvironmental conditions (i.e. light availability at ground level, as well as soil moisture and temperature) differed significantly between spring, summer and autumn gaps. The number of species and seedlings observed in spring and summer gaps was quite similar and much greater than in the autumn ones. In all patches, there were distinguished taxa occurring mostly in spring gaps, taxa colonising chiefly summer gaps, taxa recruiting mostly in autumn gaps, as well as taxa appearing equally in all types of gaps. In light of the performed investigations, it might be concluded that gap creating during the entire growing season enables the recruitment of plants with different germination requirements and finally contributes to sustained diversity of species in Molinietum caeruleae meadows.

Keywords: Germination; Light availability; Soil moisture; Soil temperature; Spontaneous colonization

A. Kumar, B. Riba

Assessment of Effectiveness of Conservation Action Adopted for Hornbill Species in Arunachal Pradesh, India: The Great Indian Hornbill

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 125-134
Nine species of hornbills have been recorded from India, of which five are found in the tropical forests of Arunachal Pradesh. All species of hornbills particularly Great Indian Hornbill (Buceros bicornis) are facing serious anthropogenic threats in form of hunting as well as habitat loss throughout the state due to use of casque and feathers in decoration of traditional headgear of the Nyishi tribe of the state. The present study was aimed to assess the effectiveness of artificial hornbill beak adoption programme introduced in Arunachal Pradesh with the aim of conserving and protecting existing population of hornbill species. The data were collected from the Nyishi people living in and around the capital complex area of Papum Pare district in the state of Arunachal Pradesh by using pre-structural questionnaire method. Results showed that beak of Buceros bicornis, was most preferred (52%) over Rhyticeros undulates (27%) and Aceros nepalensis (21%). Again the percentage of original, artificial and both, original and artificial preference were found to be 30%, 55% and 7% respectively. Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) and Arunachal Pradesh Forest Department have jointly taken the initiative of conservation of hornbill by introducing artificial beak made of fibreglass or wood for replacing original hornbill beak. The Nyishi people have increasingly accepted the artificial beak that was introduced as an alternative in early 2003s to prevent persecution of hornbills for beaks to adorn the traditional headgear. More than 43% people have shown their direct interest for conservation of hornbill species by not using the original beak in headgear. By comparing the literate and illiterate people of Nyishi community, the literate people (68.28%) have shown more interest on using the artificially decorated beak headgear than illiterate people (32.50%). Thus, Nyishi community in the state have accepted the artificial beak concept and shown more interest using the artificial beak made by either fibreglass or wood in their headgear in place of original beak to protect the wild population of hornbills.

Keywords: Hornbill; Conservation; Adoption; Anthropogenic threats; Fiberglass beak; Hunting; Nyishi tribe; Traditional headgear

Publication date 15.03.2015     


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Volume 6, Issue 2, June 2015

Research articles

T. Lech, A. Ziembinska-Buczynska, N. Krupa

Analysis of Microflora Present on Historical Textiles with the Use of Molecular Techniques

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 137-144
One of the most important point for the restoration and protection of cultural heritage objects is the early identification of material deterioration caused by microbial colonization. Biodegradation has to be understood as a result of the activity of an entire microbial community, rather than that of individual members of such community. Fungi are among the most degradative organisms inducing biodeterioration processes of ancient and modern materials. Electrophoresis in denaturing gradient gel (DGGE) is the technique most often used to study the structure of the microbial communities colonizing artworks like painted art objects, mural paintings, historical window glass, historical limestone buildings and the like. The present article describes the usage of this method to analyze the diversity of fungal taxons on the sixteenth century textile material. Additionally the procedure of main taxon identification by sequencing was described.

Keywords: DNA extraction; DGGE; textile heritage objects; fungal communities; biodeterioration

A. Elamin

Damage Caused by Insects of Ibis Mummies from Late Period: A Case Study

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 145-150
Late Period ibis mummies housed in the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) in Cairo, Egypt was selected for this study. In scholarly publications, most authors have dealt with microorganisms, while few have concerned themselves in depth with the effect of insects on the mummies. The mummies showed different signs of deterioration and degradation caused by insects, such as missing and gaps in the linen wrappings, and accumulated dust. This study aims to discuss the significance of insects and the changes they affected to the mummies. To achieve these goals, the mummies were examined by visual assessment and stereo microscope. The following insects could be identified: Attagenus unicolor, Gibbium psylloides.

Keywords: Mummy; Deterioration; Degradation; Stereo microscope; Attagenus unicolor; Gibbium psylloides

O. Abdel-Kareem

Preparation of Experimental Deteriorated Dyed Textile Samples Simulated to Ancient Ones

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 151-164
This study is carried out to investigate the possibility of preparing artificial deteriorated dyed textile samples simulated to deteriorated dyed ancient textiles, to be used as experimental samples in historical textile conservation researches. In this study new wool textiles were dyed with 10 natural dyes common used for dyeing of textiles in Egypt in different historical periods. Different mordant were used in this study to produce different colours from each dye. The dyed wool samples were artificially aged by light for various periods. The changes in the colour of dyed wool samples after aged by light were observed visually. Also the changes in the CIE L*a*b* parameters L*, a*, and b *values (ΔL*, Δa*, and Δb*) and the total change in the colour (ΔE*) were calculated. The results show that yellow dyes are the most sensitive tested dyes to light aging. Madder is most tested dyes fastness to light. This study informs that the colours that we see on historical textiles in the museum may be different than their original colours in the past in the moment of their production. The obtained results show that it is possible to prepare artificial experimental wool textile samples simulated to faded ancient ones. These artificial experimental wool textile samples can be used for conservation researches, and the practical training of textile conservators. However the exposure time required for preparing these samples depend on type of the dyes. Some of tested dyes such as indigo, cochineal, Lac need about 80 hours and other dyes such as turmeric needs about 5 hours only.

Keywords: Wool textile fabric; natural dyes; artificial light aging; CIEL*a*b* measurements; colour change.

M.M. Abdelmegeed, E. Badogiannis, G. Kotsovos, E. Vougioukas

Structural Damage Assessment of Historic Traditional Masonry Buildings: A Case Study

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 165-176
The work presented is concerned with the rehabilitation of a typical traditional masonry building built in Athens in the late 18th early 19th century. The building has suffered significant damage primarily in the form of vertical and inclined splitting of the bearing walls and fragmentation of the mortar used to bind together the masonry stones as a result of seismic excitation, lack of maintenance, construction defects, etc. The paper describes the damage suffered and investigates its causes through the use of numerical analysis techniques. It is found that the causes of damage are predominantly linked with structural deficiencies such as lack of diaphragmatic action and bracing and restoration methods are proposed. The latter include a reinforced-concrete layer at the wall crowning, strengthening (or replacement wherever necessary) of the floor timber beams and bracing in the form of external and internal reinforced concrete strips at the level of the basement floor.

Keywords: Traditional masonry buildings; Building materials; Structural elements; Deterioration phenomena; Structural damage; Cracking; Finite element method (FEM).

S. Gulzar, M.N. Chaudhry, J.-P. Burg, S.A. Saeed

Mughal Sandstone Heritage of Lahore: Formulating the Future Restoration Strategy

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 177-188
The magnificent city of Lahore in Pakistan is characterized by its rich cultural history that rose to the height of splendor during the Mughal period when richly decorated monuments were built. Presently, the accelerated deterioration of built heritage is largely attributed to the lack of information about the historic materials, which results into deficient restoration work. Seven sampled groups of stones including those used for restoration purposes have been analytically (petrography, XRD, XRF and ICPMS) and categorized into three stone types (quartz arenite, argillaceous siltstone and lithic arenite). The historic quarries from where the stone was transported in Mughal period are now in India. The restoration Khewra/ Sargodha sandstones have apparently similar characteristics but do not fit with the Vindhyan and Malani historic sandstones. The new data provide a framework to improve decision making in the selection of appropriate stone for repairs and ensure the long-term survival of historic Mughal buildings in Lahore. It becomes necessary to import stone from historic or new quarries that can supply identical stone.

Keywords: Sandstone; Mughal; Heritage; Lahore; XRF; SEM-EDS; LA-ICPMS

Y. Bamin, P.R. Gajurel

Traditional Use and Conservation of some Selected Plants Used in Festivals and Rituals in Apatani Plateau of Arunachal Pradesh, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 189-200
The Apatanis are one of the major tribes of the Eastern Himalayan state of Arunachal Pradesh and are ardent believers of nature. They use various plant species to perform their rituals, festivals, etc. for the well being of human, animals, plants and their surrounding environment as a whole. A study has been conducted to document the indigenous uses and beliefs of plants that are utilized in various rituals and festivals. The present paper discusses the major festivals and rituals of Apatanis with enumeration of uses of 20 selected plant species. Bamboos, canes and some species of Castanopsis, Magnolia, Pyrus etc. have been found well associated with the Apatani tradition without which the ritual and cultural performances cannot be completed. Since the Apatanis have put in such faith and ritualistic value to these plants and trees, they have taken the conservation and management practices of these species and other bio-resources as part of their natural life style.

Keywords: Apatani tribe; Indigenous knowledge system; Festivals; Rituals; Plant species; Traditional use; Conservation.

M. Simileanu, S. Ispas, L. Ratoiu, L. Angheluţă, C. Neamu

Folkmedia: A Modern Approach on Preservation of Romanian Folklore Archive

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 201-208
The present paper presents the results of a national project – Folkmedia - focused on a new form of a modern archive according to a strict risk assessment plan, in order to assure the collection’s viability and increase its visibility. Significant part of the archive recordings has been successfully assessed and the digitization process is running at full speed. The digitized collection are subjected to decontamination using anoxia before their relocation to the dedicated storage facility, following a one-way route. Two multifaceted databases have been elaborated in order to serve the needs of the archive researchers and also to grant access via the internet to various categories of users. The data bases contain, besides the basic archive information, complex documentation obtained using advanced photonic techniques.

Keywords: Anoxia; Folklore archive; Wax cylinders; Digitization; Multispectral imaging

E. Olajire, D.J. Nwosu, O. Alamu, D.O. Coker, S.E. Aladele

Trends in Genetic Resources Utilization in Nigeria National Gene Bank

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 209-216
Reservoirs of variation offered by conserved germplasm are required by plant breeders, agricultural researchers, research students and farmers for crop selection, improvement and production to ensure food security needs of the world’s rapidly rising population. The establishment of large, crop-genepool-specific collections at NACGRAB (National Centre for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology) gene bank, Ibadan, southwest Nigeria was based mostly on targeted collections over the years and donations. Conservation and utilization of plants genetic resources are important components of ex-situ collections. This article describes the utilization of conserved germplasm in NACGRAB gene bank as expressed from seed collection data of various end user institutions in the country over three years. The results show an increase in number of accessions of different crop species collected over the period under review. However, most collecting institutions are in close proximity to the gene bank. Highlighted were the need for improvement of utilization of gene bank materials in Nigeria through organization of campaign and public awareness programmes aimed at sensitizing the populace on germplasm utilization and improvement in networking to pivot some of the exploration activities based on their needs, and collaboration with other stakeholders to undertake germplasm characterization and evaluation in order to reduce cost.

Keywords: Genetic resources; Conservation; Utilization, Gene bank, NACGRAB.

C.K. Sahu

Traditional Knowledge on Dhokra Craft of Mayurbhanj

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 217-222
Dhokra casting is a very old practice used by the caster community in India. The indigenous knowledge of casting is still put to practice by these communities. The products of Dhokra artisans are elephant, horses, peacock, owls, religious images, lamps, bowls and are in great demand in local market as well as foreign markets. The socio-religious links for the Dhokra craft are strong in the Hindu society, during different festivals like manobasa and laxmi puja, the Dhokra materials are purchased and worship in the house.. They worship the Dhokra religious images during different festivals. They are highly appreciated because of their finer design and decorative art. Earlier craftsmen’s use to create traditional items but now days a lot of new design product like door handle, boxes, hanger and other new design products are available. The Dhokra motifs have been inspire by the tribal community and the cast group “Rana” creates Dhokra craft from brass, bronze, bell metal and aluminum. Dhokra cast people are settling near small towns, were they purchase the required materials comprised mostly of scrap metal. Craft work is done by hand, without any advancement technology. The Dhokra technique has managed to survive in Odisha through some caster community.

Keywords: Dhokra craft; Lost wax casting mould; Clay soil; modeling stick

D. Bora

Distribution of Angiospermic Monotypic Taxa in North East India and Their Conservational Importance

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 223-232
The term monotypic is self-explanatory and is important group of plants for taxonomic, phytogeography and phylogenetic studies. As North east India has a rich array of species diversity, it is the monotypic taxa that have invariably confounded taxonomic circumscription. Feeling the acute need for further researches, a review on the distribution of Angiospermic monotypic taxa in North east India has been done which result into 93 monotypic genera (represented by 44 families) in the North east Indian flora out of 236 in the Indian flora. Some of the interesting findings and their status in the region reflects the conservational importance of the artificial group.

Keywords: Monotypic taxa; North east India; Conservation

B. Singh, S.K. Borthakur

Forest Issues and Challenges in Protected Area Management: A Case Study from Himalayan Nokrek National Park and Biosphere Reserve, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 233-252
Forestry issues and challenges in terms of ecosystem conservation and management has been a debatable topic over the years. Protected area such as biosphere reserves, national parks and wildlife sanctuaries are facing unpredictable pressure of global issues such as environmental degradation, biodiversity loss, climate change, and raw material supply. Using the Nokrek National Park and Biosphere Reserve forest ecosystem in the Himalaya region as an example, this research focused on governance, economical, and technical situation that shape and improve forest management. Effective local institutions promotes biodiversity maintenance and livelihoods, and forest management requires information on status and condition of forest, therefore, emphasis put to describe threats causing loss of biodiversity, current issues and future challenges in Himalaya region. Review studies and field data indicate the study area is rich in wild flora and fauna, and act as homelands of Achik (Garo) tribe. This paper presented a framework of forest assessments and monitoring, and for discussions about ways to improve forest conservation and management that achieve environmental objectives, and at the same time promote local and national development, and contribute to sustainable local livelihoods.

Keywords: Forest Issues; Challenges; Threats; Biodiversity Management, Nokrek Biosphere Reserve, Himalaya, India

B. Subbaiyan, P. Samydurai, R. Venkatesh, V. Thangapandian

In Vitro Multiple Shoot Induction of Selected Ceropegia Species – Medicinally Important Plants

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 253-260
An efficient protocol has been developed for inducing multiple shoots from nodal explants of two asclepiads Ceropegia bulbosa Roxb and Ceropegia juncea Roxb, important medicinal plants. The sterilized nodal explants were inoculated in MS medium containing various concentrations (0.5 to 2.5mg/L) of cytokinins (BAP, Kn and TDZ) added separately. In C. juncea (6.23 shoots/explant) and C. bulbosa (5.66 shoots/explant) maximum shoots formed when nodal segments were cultured on full strength Murashige and Skoog’s (MS) basal medium fortified with 1.0mg/L BA. In vitro Shoots were subculture on the same medium. Shoots of 3-4 cm length were transferred into half strength MS medium fortified (0.3 to 1.5mg/L) with IBA, NAA and IAA. The highest numbers of roots were observed in C. bulbosa (5.8roots/explant) fortified with IBA 0.6mg/L and C. juncea (5.37roots/explant) at IBA 0.3mg/L. The rooted plantlets were hardened and fruitfully recognized in pots at 80% achievement rate.

Keywords: Ceropegia; Rare medicinal plant; Nodal explants; Multiple shoots.

A. Thapa, K. Basnet

Seasonal Diet of Wild Red Panda (Ailurus Fulgens) in Langtang National Park, Nepal Himalaya

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 261-270
We examined seasonal diet composition and food niche breadth of the red panda (Ailurus fulgens F. Cuvier 1825) in Langtang National Park, Nepal. The study, which was conducted in the Gopache, Dhokachet, and Trishuli areas of the park, employed field survey and lab techniques. For micro-histological analysis, a total of 161 red panda's fecal pellets and reference plants materials were collected from line transects (n = 12) laid between elevation between 3000-3600m with 150m altitudinal interval. Results showed the red panda’s diet comprises eight different plant species, which were further categorized into: 'bamboo', 'tree', 'herbs', 'shrubs' and 'moss' and 'unidentified'. Bamboo (Thamnocalamus aristatus) (x = 245.08±15.74%) contributed the most followed by moss (x = 5.91±1.95%), Himalayan whitebeam Sorbus cuspidata (x = 5.83±1.22%), drooping juniper Juniperus recurva (x = 1.08±071.95%), Arahaga maple Acer caudatum (x = 1.00±0.38%), and small proportions of other species including Rhododendron campanulatum, Abies spectabilis, and Rubus sp. All these plants except T. aristatus, which is consumed in all seasons and varied seasonally (c2 > 0.001, df = 11, P > 0.05) in their contribution to the red panda’s diet. Food niche breadth determination showed a low value (0.000104), which suggests highly selective foraging. Unidentified hairs, bones and claws were also observed in few fecal samples

Keywords: Food habit; Langtang; Micro-histological; Niche breadth; Red panda

Publication date 15.06.2015     


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Volume 6, Issue 3, September 2015

Research articles

M.R. Escorteganha, J. Bayon, A.G. Santiago, F.A. Richter, T.G. Costa

Interdisciplinary Studies of the “Vista Do Desterro” Painting: Historical Approach, Analysis of Materials and Preservation/Restoration Techniques

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 273-286
Scientific methods of analysis are often used for investigation of artworks, and this is also the case of the painting entitled “Vista do Desterro”, by Joseph Bruggemann, (1886) which is being restored at the Conservation-Restoration Atelier for Movable Cultural Heritage - ATECOR in Culture Foundation of Santa Catarina – FCC. This study used UV imaging methods, infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis and energy-dispersive X-ray (SEM-EDS) analysis to identify the constituent materials of the referred artwork and previous interventions on it. All the analyses showed that drying oil was used as a binder, and a layer of terpenic varnish was also found. The possibly original pigments found were the following: lead white, natural sienna, brown ocher, synthetic ultramarine and yellow ocher. In addition, areas of at least two interventions were observed, where pigments barium sulfate (permanent white), titanium dioxide (titanium white) and traces of zinc oxide (zinc white) were detected; such pigments are typical of times later than that of the original painting. Finally, relining was identified, with use of glue based on vinyl substrate (standard PVA). This process was associated with the last intervention because of the date of this material. The chemical analysis of this artwork were crucial for the decisions about its restoration process, which also included an interdisciplinary team that joined forces to work on its historicity, supplemented by technical and conceptual analysis of the conservator-restorer responsible for restoration interventions.

Keywords: Canvas paint; pigments; Art restoration; Art conservation; IR and EDS spectroscopy; UV light examination

A. Cosentino

Effects of Different Binders on Technical Photography and Infrared Reflectography of 54 Historical Pigments

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 287-298
Technical Photography (TP) is the collection of broadband spectral images in the range 360 - 1100 nm collected with a modified digital camera: visible (VIS), ultraviolet fluorescence (UVF), reflected ultraviolet (UVR), infrared (IR), infrared fluorescence (IRF) and infrared false color (IRFC). An InGaAs camera is sensitive to the 900-1700 nm range and provides infrared reflectography (IRR) images. It was previously shown that all these techniques used together allow a tentative identification of pigments laid with gum arabic. While the identification must be confirmed with analytical instruments, this flowchart method allows a fast and low-cost preliminary examination of polychrome works of art. This paper discusses the effects that other binders (egg tempera, linseed oil and fresco) can have on technical photos and on infrared reflectography images of 54 historical pigments. It is shown that only the UVF photos are considerably affected by these binders. The strong fluorescence emission of egg tempera and linseed oil dominate the UVF photos while the binders do not consistently affect the other technical photos, IR, IRF, IRFC and IRR. This study confirmed the validity of this comparative method for the tentative identification of pigments laid with the most common binders used on works of art.

Keywords: Technical photography; Pigments identification; Infrared photography; Ultraviolet photography; Ultraviolet reflected photography; Infrared false color; Infrared fluorescence; IR; IRF; UVF; UVR; IRFC

A.M.A. Kamel, H.A.H. Marie, H.A. Mahmoud, M.F. Ali

Evaluation of Sulphate Activators as Consolidants for the Transformed Gypsum in Historic Stucco

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 299-312
Stucco monuments suffer from many causes of deterioration; one of these is the transformation of the gypsum content of stucco to anhydrite, which causes disintegration and the appearance of fine fissures that sometimes culminate in the complete loss of archaeological stucco material; this problem makes thinking of a new protocol for its treatment very urgent. So the research proposes using sulphate activators, which may lead to retransformation of anhydrite to gypsum and thus will participate in protecting our stucco heritage. Many parameters have been used; including XRPD analysis, XRF, FTIR, measurement of physical and mechanical properties, SEM and aging by sodium chloride. All results proved that sulphate activator solutions have the ability to retransform anhydrite to gypsum and to increase the mechanical strength of stucco material.

Keywords: Anhydrite; Consolidant; Gypsum; Stucco; Sulphate activators.

D. Grossi, E.A. Del Lama, J. Garcia-Talegon, A.C. Iñigo, S. Vicente-Tavera

Evaluation of Colorimetric Changes in the Itaquera Granite of the Ramos de Azevedo Monument, São Paulo, Brazil

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 313-322
Itaquera Granite, as a building stone material, was widely used in the early 20th century for the construction of buildings and monuments in the centre of the city of São Paulo, Brazil. The color variation of the Itaquera Granite of the Ramos de Azevedo Monument was monitored for two years and these data were compared with those obtained for fresh stone originated from a historic quarry. The oxidation of iron-rich minerals present in this granite, coupled with pollution (high levels of O3), biological colonization, leaching of bronze, and the dissolution and reprecipitation of mortar, causes colorimetric changes in the stone. Measurements were also performed on zones of the monument with pathologies. Two statistical Canonical Biplot analyses were made on the data of chromatic coordinates monitored (L*, a*, b*, C* and H*): orientation/year and orientation/pathologies. The results obtained for the chromatic variation in the monument are primarily related to yellowing caused by deposition of atmospheric pollutants and weathering of iron-rich minerals.

Keywords: Itaquera Granite; Color; CIE L*a*b*; Spectrophotometer; Biplot analysis.

K.P. Simonsen, P. Bøllingtoft, J. Sanyova, P. Wangdu, M. Scharff, A.R. Rasmussen

Tibetan Wall Painting: Investigation of Materials and Techniques and DNA Analysis of Proteinaceous Binding Medium

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 323-334
The present study concerns the technology of Tibetan wall painting i.e. the pigments, binding medium and stratigraphic build-up. Original Tibetan materials were brought to the School of Conservation in Denmark by two Tibetan artists. Pigments and binding medium were analysed by Attenuated Total Reflection - Fourier-transformed Infrared Spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), Micro-Raman Spectroscopy (MRS), X-ray powder Diffraction (XRD), Scanning Electron Microscopy - Energy Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDX), High Performance Liquid Chromatography with Diode-Array Detector (HPLC-DAD) and thermally assisted Hydrolysis and Methylation Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (THM-GC-MS). The proteinaceous binding medium which was expected to be Yak ox (Bos grunniens) glue was identified by DNA analysis. The painting techniques of the Tibetan artist were followed during their painting of a traditional wall painting. The results show that several pigments were adulterated compared to the artists’ belief and that the supposed Yak ox glue derived from Indian cow (Bos indicus).

Keywords: Tibetan wall painting, Pigments and dyes, Proteinaceous binding medium, DNA analysis, MRS, XRD, THM-GC-MS, HPLC

M.F. La Russa, M. Ricca, C.M. Belfiore, S.A. Ruffolo, M.Á. De Buergo Ballester, G.M. Crisci

The Contribution of Earth Sciences to the Preservation of Underwater Archaeological Stone Materials: An Analytical Approach

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 335-348
This work focuses on the study of alteration and degradation forms affecting underwater archaeological marble fragments mainly due to biological activity. The studied artefacts were recovered from the submerged archaeological park of Baia (Naples, Italy). It includes ruins of the ancient city of Baiae, which, since the 4th century AD, started to be submerged due to the bradyseism phenomenon. Diagnostic investigations were carried on 50 marbles specimens, collected from covering slabs of different pavements, from a specific area of the site called “Villa con ingresso a protiro”. Several techniques, including stereomicroscopy, polarizing optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and mineralogical analysis, were used to study the superficial weathering, as well as the bioerosion phenomena due to the action of marine organisms and their interaction with the substrate in relation to textural features. Results revealed that the main degradation processes can be attributable to endolithic activity, capable of excavating cavities and tunnels causing irreversible damage to the archaeological materials. In addition, samples revealed a different degree of bioerosion related to their specific intrinsic characteristics.

Keywords: Bioerosion; Composition; Damage; Marble; Texture; Underwater environment.

M. El-Gohary

Effective Roles of Some Deterioration Agents Affecting Edfu Royal Birth House "Mammisi"

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 349-368
This paper is the first part of a study about a birth house located in Edfu temple. It studies the deterioration phenomena that has affected the stone surfaces, and the ideal methods and materials, which have been used for conserving and restoring stone surfaces. In this article, three of the main deterioration factors which have affected the monument under study are identified. Furthermore, field observations are conducted to achieve a weathering graphical profile and deterioration patterns. In addition, different investigating techniques are used for studying aggressive influences affecting the stone surfaces to evaluate their weathering state and defining their different chemical characteristics and physio-mechanical properties. These techniques are EDS, SEM, and XRD, in addition to different scientific computer programs. Our findings have proved that the main factors of deterioration affecting the monument are mainly three factors. They are alternative effects of air temperature and relative humidity, Man made damages and bird effects. The study shows that the main elemental composition consists of Al, K, Ca, Na, S, Cl and Mg; these elements are present in different structures such as Quartz, Mica, Plagioclase and Calcite as main minerals. Hematite and Goethite as cement materials. Finally Halite, Sylvite, Niter, Nitrate and Kaolinite as a salt and weathering products. Moreover, SEM morphological investigations have proved that the grains of the investigated samples are characterized by the presence of severe abrasive in Qz grains, and the spreading of soiling particles and salt layers. In addition, etching of the cement materials because of hydrolysis process. Moreover, the presence of weakness and brittleness of stone core and some pits on the stone surface are observed.

Keywords: Mammisi; Deterioration patterns; Weathering graphical profile; EDS; SEM; XRD.

R.R.A. Hassan

A “Tafsir Al Khazen” Manuscript (17th Century AD). A Technical Study

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 369-382
This study focuses on using analytical techniques for identifying the components of the manuscript to explain its deterioration process. The “Tafsir Al Khazen” manuscript, a rare manuscript of the seventeenth century, consists of paper sheets and leather bookbinding; it had been damaged by sewage water in the courtyard of the Al-Azhar mosque. Concerning measurements, we used visual assessment, pH measurements, isolation and identification of fungi, moisture content, investigation of the surface morphology by SEM, identification of pigment binder by FTIR - ATR, chemical testing of the paper components, X-ray diffraction and EDX analysis of ink and pigments X- ray diffraction analysis (XRD) for determining paper crystallinity. The results revealed that cotton fibres may have been used as raw material in the creation of paper. Alum, gelatine have been used as a sizing in paper manuscript. Goat skin was identified as the animal skin of the bookbinding, the black ink used was carbon ink, the pigments used on the paper were silver sulphide (HgS) for red colour, gold leaf for gold colour and natural ultramarine mixed with white lead for blue colour. Aspergillus sp. and Penicillium sp. were the most dominant fungi found on the manuscript. The pH of leather was higher than in normal conditions.

Keywords: Rosin; moisture content; SEM; amino acids; pH; fungi; crystallinity

D. Nandi, J. Kant, C.K. Sahu

Integrated Approach Using Remote Sensing and GIS for Hydrogeology of Moroda Block in Mayurbhanj District, Odisha, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 383-390
Due to the highly complex nature of both human and physical systems, the ability to understand them and model future conditions using a watershed approach has taken a geographic aspect. Satellite remote sensing and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology have played a vital role in all aspects of watershed management. For the study of hydrogeology of Moroda block of Mayurbhanj District Thematic maps are prepared by visual interpretation of SOI toposheets and linearly enhanced merged data of Landsat, Cartosat and LISS-III imagery on 1:50,000 scale using ERDAS and Arc GIS software. The main aim of the study involves compiling and analyzing all available data on hydro-geological framework of the block to assess its ground water development potential for improving socio-economic development of the block. By study we find that the entire block can be broadly divided into two distinct zones viz; tertiary formation and river alluvium. The hydro-geological setup and ground water development potential of these formation varies significantly from each other. The granular zone occurring under un-confined and semi-confined condition in the tertiary tract of the district can suitably be tapped through installation shallow tube wells as well as medium deep tube wells.

Keywords: Remote Sensing; GIS; Hydrogeology; ERDAS and Arc GIS software

R.A. Mandal, I.C. Dutta, P.K. Jha, S.B. Karmacharya

Effects of Forest Carbon on Ecological Value of Species in Collaborative Forests, Tarai, Nepal

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 391-400
There is an imperative interrelationship between people and forests however forests loss is continued which causes several complexities. This research was objectively done to show the effects of carbon stock on species ranking in collaborative forests (CFMs). The randomized block design (RBD) was set and stratified random sampling was applied to collect the biophysical data. Total 33, 32 and 31 samples were collected from Banke- Maraha, Tuteshwarnath and Gadhanta- Bardibash CFMs respectively; establishing 20*25m2 plot for trees using GPS coordinates. The height and diameter of plants were measured. Additionally, frequency and density of plant species were also recorded. Latter biomass was calculated using equation by Chave et al. and importance value index (IVI) was also calculated to prioritize the species. Additionally, mix rank was also estimated by using IVI and carbon to evaluate effects of carbon on species ranking. It showed that, estimated highest IVI was 68.59 in Shorea robusta in Tuteshwarnath CFM. The carbon stock of Shorea robusta was the highest 50.43±0.43 t ha-1 in Gadhanta- Bardibash CFM. Total 11 species like Dalbergia latifolia, Schleichera trijuga, Croton roxburghii and Acacia catechu were promoted their rank under mix criteria. This showed that there was effect of carbon on species ranking.

Keywords: IVI; Forest carbon; Ranking ecological value; Promotion

G. Romanescu, R.G. Curca, I.G. Sandu

Salt Deposits in the Romanian Subcarpathians - Genesis, Repartition and Ethnomanagement

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 401-410
Subcarpathians represent the transition unit between mountain and plateau and they are rich in salt deposits. They are situated between the Valleys of Moldova (N) and Motru (V). Mine salt has been exploited since the Neolithic and it still represents an important source of raw materials for the rural population. Salt deposits were created in the lagoon areas situated near the mountain frame. The local climate favoured water evaporation and the depositing of salt, which was covered by eroded materials from Eastern and Southern Carpathians. The high degree of salinity was provided by the warm and dry climate. Local factors led to a chemical differentiation between the Subcarpathian deposits and Transylvanian Depression deposits. Ancient exploitations, dating back in history, have recorded continuity until nowadays. Most amounts of salt are used in chemical industry. In terms of ethnomanagement, it is worth reminding household uses: for preserving vegetables, meat; for making cheese; for sprinkling hays, etc. On local level, it is distributed on short distances and only rarely transported on long distances (dozens or hundreds of kilometres). Maps were generated for the main salt deposits within the Romanian Subcarpathian area.

Keywords: Exploitation; Lagoons; Spatial repartition; Resource; Utilization.

R. Tilling, P. Bharali, P. Dutta, G. Gogoi, A. Paul, A.K. Das

Ethnomedicinal Plants Used by Apatani Tribe of Ziro Valley of Arunachal Pradesh

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 411-418
Arunachal Pradesh is the store house of biological and socio-cultural diversity among the north eastern states of India. Local inhabitants of the state are mostly dependent on forest and forest resources having rich indigenous knowledge on practices of medicinal plant species for curing various ailments. Present study has been carried out to document the use pattern of medicinal plant species by the Apatani tribe of Ziro Valley of Lower Subanshiri district of Arunachal Pradesh. Information was gathered through conversations with elderly indigenous people inhabiting nearby the forest areas. Present study exhibited a total of 34 plant species belonging to 32 genera and 23 families. Herbs contributed highest with 67.65%, shrubs 11.76%, trees 11.76% while climbers only 8.82% of the total recorded medicinal plant species. Plants are used to cure various ailments like allergy, anthelmintic, appetizer, bleeding, blood pressure, body ache, cancer, cold, cough, cuts, diarrhea, dysentery, fever, gastritis, headache, indigestion, jaundice, stomach ache, swells, wounds etc. Most of the species are collected from wild. Leaves are the major plant parts used for the preparation of indigenous medicine. Such studies provide vital clues as to the formulation of potential products for pharmaceutical purposes. Besides, there is scope of improving rural economy of the state as a whole. Moreover, scientific input on indigenous knowledge is likely to benefit the traditional society as well as will help in conservation of useful plant species. The local inhabitants are still dependent on traditional folklore and traditional medicinal system. Therefore, it is high time to adopt holistic approach for conservation and documentation of ethnomedicobotanical knowledge of the tribal people for the greater benefit of the future generation.

Keywords: Apatani tribe; Arunachal Pradesh; Conservation; Indigenous knowledge; Medicinal plants; Ziro Valley

A.K. Sinha, G.K. Mallick, P.K. Mishra

Grain Morphological Diversity of Traditional Rice Varieties (Oryza Sativa l.), In Lateritic Region of West Bengal

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 419-426
Fifty five traditional rice varieties of West Bengal, mostly from the lateritic region, were investigated for grain morphological characters. A wide variation of grain characters, like gain size and shape, anthocyanin colouration of lemma-palea and kernel, presence or absence of aroma, awning characteristics, ware found among the studied varieties. Wide variation among the grain morphological characters indicated wide genetic variation present among these varieties, which may be utilized for the selection of the parents for the plant breeding and production of new improved variety.

Keywords: Grain morphology; Traditional rice; Lateritic region; West Bengal

A.A. Ogunjinmi, B.G. Oluwatuyi, B.J. Oniya

Determining Ecological Knowledge and Attitudes of Students: The Role of Personal Factors and School Exposure

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 427-436
This study assessed the roles of personal factors and school exposure in determining ecological knowledge and attitudes of secondary school students in Akure South Local Government Area of Ondo State, Nigeria. Data were obtained through structured questionnaires administered on 135 students in 10 randomly selected schools. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, Chi-Square, Pearson’s correlation and multiple linear regressions. The result showed that 63.7% of the respondents were male; the mean and median age was 15.3 years and 15 years respectively. The components of the environment were effectively covered by the science based classes than the non-science based classes. The students showed positive knowledge about all the items listed on water, pollution, energy, recycling, animals and other general issues. The predictors of students’ ecological knowledge were sex (β=0.18, p < 0.05) and nature of class (β=0.34, p < 0.01). The study further revealed that there was a strong and significant relationship between the status of the school (β=0.26, p< 0.01) and the ecological attitude of the students. Also, the study showed that there was a significant relationship between school exposure through teachings (r=0.18, p < 0.05) and their ecological knowledge and attitudes. It is therefore recommended enrichment of school environmental curriculum to ensure a sustainable ecological knowledge.

Keywords: Ecological knowledge; attitude; personal factors; roles; exposure.

Publication date 15.09.2015     


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Issue Cover

Volume 6, Special Issue, 2015

Selected articles presented at GILT-EnArt 2015
International Conference on Gilding Materials and Techniques in European Art
Evora, 25th – 27th of May 2015

Guest Editor:
Irina Crina Anca SANDU

[ Foreword - PDF ]

I.C.A. Sandu, E. Murta, S. Ferreira, M.F. Costa Pereira, S. Hrdlickova Kuckova, V. Valbi, L. Dias, C. Prazeresi, A.M. Cardoso, J. Mirao, A.E. Candeias

A Comparative Multi-technique Investigation on Material Identification of Gilding Layers and the Conservation State of 7 Portuguese Mannerist Altarpieces

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 439-454
This paper deals with the multi-analytical comparative characterization of 59 samples of gilded and polychrome layers from 7 altarpieces studied during the Gilt-Teller project (www.gilt-teller.pt). The altarpieces studied here belong to seven churches in the areas of Lisbon, Santarém, Portalegre and Guarda and display stylistic and constructive features characteristic to the Mannerism carved wood decoration in Portugal. The applied protocol of investigation characterized the structure and manufacture technique of gilding; identified the chemical composition of the layers constituting the gilded polychrome decoration; compared the materials and gilding techniques encountered in the 7 altarpieces and assessed the conservation state of each altarpiece. The analytical techniques applied to these purposes were: stereomicroscopy (SM), optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (SEM-EDX), X-ray diffraction (XRD), MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry, µRaman and µFTIR/imaging µFTIR spectroscopies. This interdisciplinary multi-scale approach was used to elucidate the aspects related to the material and technical aspects of “talha dourada” decoration, answering to these questions: which are the original materials and layers in the making of the polychromy and which are the ones added with posterior interventions; which are the relationships between gilding materials and techniques, regarding the degree of erudition of each case study; which were the main causes of degradation and influence to their conservation condition?

Keywords: Altarpiece; Mannerist style; Portugal; carved gilded wood; gilding techniques and materials; comparative study; conservation state

L.M. Angheluta, D.V. Ene

An Interdisciplinary Field Campaign for Modern Investigation and Monitoring in Preservation and Restoration

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 455-464
This paper describes the good practice demonstrations and results of an open restoration site organized at Tismana Monastery, Gorj County. For about two weeks an interdisciplinary team consisted in student restorers and research scientists joined their efforts to apply and demonstrate a model of good practice in modern restoration. This model is based on the infrastructure offered by the mobile laboratory ART4ART deployed on-site. The activities comprised non-invasive and non-destructive investigations and monitoring in several working areas with various casuistry. The list of modern technology used includes: laser induced fluorescence, multispectral imaging, 3D laser scanning, digital microscopy and ground penetrating RADAR. A long term monitoring of the microclimate (temperature and relative humidity) was also maintained. The purpose of the mixed working groups was to exchange knowledge between restorers and scientists through on-site course-like presentations and demonstrations. There were also tested the possibilities of Internet accessibility to infrastructure in areas with low or no GSM signal. In this paper will also be presented some of the results and the conclusion after this experience.

Keywords: Artwork conservation-restoration; Mobile laboratory; Open laboratory; On site courses; Open restoration site

S.V. Kumar, M. Singh, S.W. Wagh, N.E. Mahajan

Polychrome Sculptures of St. Francis of Assisi Church, Old Goa: A Challenge in Scientific Conservation

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 465-472
The wooden polychrome sculptures of a saint from the church of St. Francis of Assisi were in multiple pieces. Insect activity was also noticed at some points of wooden polychrome. The broken pieces of polychrome figure was joined with copper nails followed by filling of the voids with teak wood saw dust mixed with Araltite Carpender. Anti termite solution was injected in many parts of the polychrome figure to arrest the insect activity. Minimal colour re-integration was carried out at the joints. Finally the sculpture was chemically cleaned with the mixture of organic solvents such as Toluene, n-butane, 2-ethoxy ethanol. The wooden polychrome sculptures are in good state of preservation and has now been displayed in Goa churches. The environmental parameters were also studied and some precautionary measures to prevent the deterioration of wooden fabric by the relative humidity have also been recommended.

Keywords: Polychrome Sculpture; Anti termite solution; Colour re-integration; Environmental parameters.

I.C.A. Sandu, E. Murta, F. Eusebio, R. Veiga, L. Jorge, V.S. Muralha, M.F. Costa Pereira, T. Busani, N. Leal, S. Ferreira

Creating the Illusion: The Marble and Stone-Like Decoration of the Main Altarpiece of St. Francis Church, in Viseu

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 473-486
The paper presents an innovative interdisciplinary study focusing on the gilded/ polychrome decoration emulating stone-like surfaces of a Rococo Retable from Saint Francis Church in Viseu, Portugal. This study was undertaken within a 3-year research project, abbreviated Gilt-Teller (http://www.gilt-teller.pt). For the characterization of the altarpiece’s polychromy a representative number of samples were analyzed using a multi-technique methodology: Optical Microscopy coupled with fluorescent staining tests, microFTIR/FTIR and microRaman spectroscopy, micro-computerized tomography, Scanning Electron Microscopy coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry. Preliminary results reveal the stratigraphical and compositional characteristics of the polychromy: ground layers made of gypsum, anhydrite, calcium carbonate and animal glue; bole layers of red ochre color (Hematite); Au/Cu/Ag metal leaf, coated with shellac; marble-like polychromy made with blue, white and red pigments (Prussian blue, Lead white, Hematite, Vermillion) and “golden particles” (Cu-Zn alloy ink-type) applied in the form of fine lines on their shaft or on the round-shaped base of the columns.

Keywords: Marble-like decoration; altarpiece; interdisciplinary study; gilding materials; decorative techniques;

C. Nodal, I.C.A. Sandu, R. Veiga

The Vermeillonner, an Original Seventeenth Century French Gilding Technique, also Used in Spain (Bronceado) and Portugal (Foscado) during the Eighteenth Century

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 487-498
This paper aims to present a typical matte finish coating made with a tinted glaze applied to gilding found on late Baroque and Rococo polychrome altarpieces in Spain and Portugal dating from the mid eighteenth century. This practice is poorly studied in Portuguese historiography. In order to characterize this particular technique, it was necessary to consult earlier baroque treatises on art, as well as numerous contemporary gilding contracts signed during the eighteenth century in Spain and Portugal. This technique is known as ‘Vermeillonner’, which consists of applying a transparent glaze of ‘vermeil’ over gold leaf. This term is popularized in France in the eighteenth century, though ‘Bronceado’ (‘bronzed’, because of having a bronze-like color) is used in Spanish or ‘Foscado’ (‘matted’, because the surface layer provides a matte appearance to the gilding) in Portuguese. New researches have allowed establishing the origins of the technique in a French treatise of 1679.

Keywords: Vermeil; Vermeillonner; Bronceado; Foscado; Matting; Cross-Sections; Gum Arabic; Dragon’s Blood

T. Rosado, M. Silva, C. Pereira, J. Mirão, A. Candeias, A.T. Caldeira

Gilded Woodcarving Alteration: Assessment of Filamentous Fungi Action

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 499-506
Biodegradation and biodeterioration by living organisms can cause massive damage to historical monuments. Fungi are a major responsible in wood degradation sharing a single strategy for degrading wood polymers by secreting enzymes that break down the main constituents of wood such as cellulose or xylose. In this work, the presence and participation of fungi in woodcarving and their biological activity were examined by monitoring their cellulolytic/xylanolytic activity. Isolated fungi of the genera Penicillium, Cladosporium and Mucor showed the highest cellulose and xylose activity and are therefore the main responsible for the structural deterioration of wood support of the altars of the Espírito Santo Church, Évora, Portugal. The application of combined strategies allow a fast and efficient screening to signalise the main biodegradative agents in gilded woodcarving.

Keywords: biodegradation; gilded woodcarving; cellulolytic/xylanolytic activity; wood decay; fungal development

S. Hrdlickova Kuckova, J. Schultz, R. Veiga, E. Murta, I.C.A. Sandu

Proteomics Tools for the Contemporary Identification of Proteinaceous Binders in Gilded Samples

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 507-518
This paper deals with the characterization of several gilded and polychrome samples from the carved wood Portuguese heritage using a novel proteomics approach aimed to identify and map the presence of different proteinaceous binders. Eight samples originating from two altarpieces (Main altarpiece from Miranda de Douro Cathedral and Main altarpiece of the Cathedral in Funchal, Madeira) and three polychrome sculptures (St. Joseph from Aveiro Museum and two sculptures by Machado de Castro) were taken and analysed both as fragments/separated layers (e.g. ground layer separated from the gilded/polychrome layers) and cross-sections. The methodology proposed here makes use of proteomics techniques such as ELISA, MALDI-TOF-MS, nano-LC-ESI-Q-TOF and optical microscopy coupled with a fluorescent staining test (Sypro Ruby) on samples and cross-sections and is part of the analytical task of the Gilt-Teller project (www.gilt-teller.pt). ELISA, and both mass spectrometric techniques MALDI-TOF and nano-LC-ESI-Q-TOF showed a good detection of collagens on whole fragments or separated layers and also on cross-sections, while the mass spectrometric techniques were less sensitive for egg proteins. Nevertheless, the combined use of them together with the mapping on cross-sections using the fluorescent stain made the simultaneous identification and location of these binder materials in the stratigraphy of some samples possible.

Keywords: Proteomics; ELISA; LC-MS/MS; MALDI-TOF MS; proteinaceous binders; gilded carved wood

M. Silva, T. Rosado, D. Teixeira, A. Candeias, A.T. Caldeira

Production of Green Biocides for Cultural Heritage - Novel Biotechnological Solutions

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 519-530
The growth control of microflora in cultural and built heritage is usually performed by treatments using chemicals that have high toxicity. Thus it is crucial to develop strategies to discover new bioactive molecules and establish effective approaches against the effectively biodeteriogenic agents, which are responsible for degradation of cultural and built heritage, without detriment to the environment. Bacillus sp. produce a high number of secondary metabolites, some with antibiotic properties which can be used against biodeteriogenic filamentous fungi, source of serious damage in historic materials. These antagonistic proprieties are due to the production of bioactive lipopeptides which exhibit antifungal activity in the stationary phase of bacteria growth, being associated to secondary metabolism. A combined methodology using antifungal tests, chromatographic techniques, FTIR-ATR, microscopic approaches and simulations assays allowed the detection of antifungal potential and a rapid identification of these ground-breaking bioactive compounds without the need of previous total isolation. This novel green biocides show a great potential for future application in cultural and built heritage rehabilitation being an effective alternative to the chemical compounds usually applied.

Keywords: Cultural Heritage; Bioactive compounds; Lipopeptides; Bacillus sp.; Biocides

E. Darque-Ceretti, M. Aucouturier, E. Felder, A. Burr, D. Robcis, C. Thomas

New Leaf Gilding Alloys: Physico-Chemistry, Colour, Mechanical Behavior

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 531-540
In the frame of a systematic investigation on leaf gilding history and processes, in a research program intending to propose gold leaf alloys specially devoted to restoration, new gold alloys containing low concentration additions of In or Pd were designed and leaves were elaborated in collaboration with the goldbeater Dauvet. The influence of those elements on the colour change induced by alloying was obtained by colorimetry. The microstructural and metallurgical properties of the alloys were studied by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The foils and leaves were characterized at the different manufacturing steps by EBSD (Backscattered Electron Diffraction), in order to evaluate the effect of the fabrication process on the microstructure and crystallographic texture. Surface segregation of the alloying element, influencing surface colour, was sometimes evidenced and discussed. The mechanical properties of the foils or leaves were measured by micro- and nano-indentation. The obtained properties and behaviour of the new alloys were compared with those of the leaves currently used for leaf gilding. The results conducted the beating company to consider developing new gold leaves production range(s) devoted specially for restoration application. As a result of the present investigation, new manufacturing and gilding procedures have been proposed.

Keywords: Gold alloys; Leaf gilding; Colour; Mechanical properties; Texture

I.C.A. Sandu, F. Paba, E. Murta, M.F. Costa Pereira, L. Dias, J. Mirão, A.E. Candeias

Two Recipes from Portuguese Tradition of Gilding on Wooden Support Between Laboratory Reproduction and Analytical Investigation

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 541-556
This paper has the main purpose to compile and highlight the first data obtained from experimental studies on docµmented reconstructions of gilded composites performed within a research project on gilding materials and techniques in Portugal (www.gilt-teller.pt) funded by FCT. Two water gilding recipes were appropriately chosen from the treatises written by the Portuguese Filipe Nunes (1615) and José Lopes Baptista de Almada (1749) as being representative for Baroque époque. Based on these recipes, the production of raw materials - “gesso grosso”, “gesso fino”, bole, animal glue (from lamb and goat skins) - was made as faithful as possible. Their application was then performed in laboratory following the indications given by these authors or by treatises of previous époques (e.g. the Bolognese treatise for thawing leather), on plane and curved wooden supports (pine and oak species) using three types of leaf: gold (Au/Ag/Cu) of 22 and 23.75 karat respectively and silver. After the completion of gilding, the samples’ surfaces were divided into areas and on each different finishing layers (wax, animal glue size) and decorations (punching, “esgrafitado”, “estofado”) were applied. An analytical campaign using optical microscopy (OM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) on surfaces and cross sections, X-ray diffraction (XRD), micro-computerized tomography (microCT) and colorimetry (CIEL*a*b*) was undertaken in order to characterize the gilded composites and to assess the faithfulness of the reproductions in the laboratory. Correlations between the information given by the recipes and the composition and stratigraphical patterns of the reconstructions can be established. Furthermore, the study aims to highlight the difficulties encountered in analyzing real samples and comparing the results with those from reproductions as the number and types of layered materials are not always reproducible. A critical approach is needed and criteria for faithful reproduction of ancient recipes are suggested.

Keywords: Water gilding; Recipes; Reconstructions; Treatises; Cross sections

A. Munteanu, A.E. Simionescu, M. Urma

New research on materials used in the paintings of icons on glass in Transylvania in the XIX Century

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 557-570
In Transylvania, glass icon is, by excellence, the art of peasants’ artists. The painting of icons on glass has used the following types of materials: glass as support, pigments and dyes, organic binders, other additives, gold leaf and several species of wood for frames and for the back of icon. In the practice of Transylvanian art of glass icon the iconographic model have a Byzantine origin. The gilding technique using gold leafs is common for all glass-paintings workshops of Transylvania and cannot be found in other parts of the Central European glass paintings. Preparation of color and the application of local tones were made by the more experienced members of the family, and the most skilled made the drawings, writing and application of bright spots. Retouching and application of the gold leaf were made only by the head of the workshop. Our research focuses on the binders used in applying gold and silver leaf for either the icon‘s background, the halos, the golden thrones, the ornamentation of garments or to highlight a symbol - the cross, chalice, the earth globe kept by Jesus Pantocrator. A set of tests was developed to establish the presence of chemical elements that give us information about pictorial materials used by icons painters from the late nineteenth century.

Keywords: Glass painting; Silver leaf; Brass powder; Colored soils; Conservation state

Publication date 30.09.2015     


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Volume 6, Issue 4, December 2015

Research articles

A. Abdrabou, M. Abdallah, M. Abd El Kader

Analytical Study and Conservation Processes of a Painted Wooden Graeco - Roman Coffin

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 573-586
This paper describes conservation processes of an Ancient Egyptian painted wooden coffin dating back to Graeco-Roman period using several scientific and analytical methods in order to provide a deeper understanding of the deterioration status, and a greater awareness of how well preserved the object is. Visual observation and 2D Program as well as Optical Micros-copy (OM), Environmental scanning Electron Microscopy (ESEM), X-ray Diffraction (XRD) and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) were used in our study. Studies that include the identification of wood species, ground layer, red paint layer, binding medium and previous restoration materials were made. The coffin was previously conserved and stored in im-proper conditions which led to its further deterioration, the surface of the lid was extensively embedded with dust and bird droppings which obscured the decorations as well as missing and peeled painted gesso layers in many places and previous plaster fills obscured original surface. Soon after transportation from El-minia storage to the Wood Conservation Laboratory of the Grand Egyptian Museum-Conservation Center (GEM-CC), conservation procedures have been applied with high accu-racy to conserve the coffin including cleaning, stabilization of the friable painted gesso layers, reattaching lifting paint layers, removal of previous restoration and filling cracks and voids. The materials and methods that had been applied were extremely effective to stability and reinforcement of the coffin without harmfulness on the original materials and the coffin was success-fully conserved and ready to display or storage in the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM).

Keywords: Painted coffin; Deterioration aspects; Wood identification; Stratigraphic structure

Z. Youssef, F. Kharrat

The Conservation of the Roman Mosaics in the Museum of Sousse in Tunisia: Between Doctrines and Practices

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 587-600
Our paper deals with the discipline of conservation of Roman mosaics based on the proceedings of the workshop of the Museum of Sousse. Thus, we highlight two main objectives. In the first place, it is a question of revealing the techniques adopted by professionals to handle mosaics. In the second place, we are going to interpret the works initiated to preserve the archaeological heritage in order to protect it in present time and transmit it to future generations. To this end, we paid attention to four Roman mosaics currently exhibited in the Museum and known under the names of: Orpheus Charming the Animals, Gladiator and Bears, Stud farm of Sorothus and Head of Medusa. They show different gaps at the level of their surfaces, and the method used to fill them seems to be interesting to analyze. The study on the conservation passes through two chained phases. We start with a small historical overview. Afterward, the intervention process is analyzed by handling three complementary elements that are: diagnosis of the existing state, the study of the medium processing and the study of the processing of the tesselatum surface which includes the pictorial composition of the mosaic. Furthermore, we have implemented an evaluation matrix with seven operating principles allowing the assessment of the appropriateness of the intervention. These principles are the following: minimal intervention, reversibility, compatibility, visibility, durability, authenticity and enhancement. Various accumulated outcomes are pointing out the techniques used to fill the gaps as well as the level of compliance with the principles of conservation. Accordingly, the conservation of mosaics in Tunisia is a practice that combines various techniques without really arguing about the choice of a particular theory.

Keywords: Roman mosaics; Museum of Sousse; Conservation; Operating principles; Particular theory.

G. Leucci, F. Grasso, R. Persico, L. De Giorgi

Integrated GPR Prospecting and Historical Research in three Churches

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 601-610
In this paper, we show the results of three case histories where GPR prospecting has been interpreted also with the aid of a specific archive research on documents of the XVI and XVII century. The case histories are related to three churches of the renaissance and baroque period in Lecce, Lecce, Southern Italy. The aim is to deliver the usefulness of GPR prospecting in these kind of monuments and to show how the likelihood of the interpretation can be increased when historical information is available.

Keywords: Archaeology; Baroque; GPR; Monuments.

M.M. Rifai, Z.A. Hamid, S.M. Saleh, M.M. Abdelbar

Evaluation of new Coatings for the Protection of Ornamental Cast Ironwork Exposed in Uncontrolled Environment

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 611-624
Ironworks constitute a great part of the world cultural heritage of metallic objects. Amongst these only a small part are on display in controlled environments. The rest is often exposed to uncontrolled atmospheres, high humidity and fluctuating temperatures and are usually heavily corroded. The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficiency of organic coating materials and corrosion inhibitors to protect ornamental cast ironwork from corrosion in uncontrolled environment using electrochemical techniques (Potentiodynamic polarization Tafel lines and electrochemical impedance (EIS)) and one year of exposure inside the clock tower of Muhammed Ali’s mosque in Salah El-Din Citadel in Cairo (natural ageing). Grey cast iron coupons were prepared to simulate the composition and morphology of the historic cast iron staircase, and treated with different protection systems. Four organic coatings have been studied; a methyl acrylate / ethyl methacrylate copolymer resin (Paraloid™ B-72) dissolved in acetone, an ethylene copolymer wax (Poligen® CE 9), Permalac (N-Butyl acetate-14.0) and Permalac EF (N-Butyl acetate-14.0). The last two have not been commonly used in conservation and restoration treatments. Two corrosion inhibitors have been studied; tannic acid and tannic acid mixed with phosphoric acid. The results indicated that the best protection of cast iron coupons was afforded by Permalac, which protects cast iron from corrosion and the effect of UV. Finally, Permalac was applied on the staircase inside the clock tower of Muhammed Ali’s mosque.

Keywords: Ornamental Cast Ironworks; Corrosion; Conservation; Protection

E. Torrero, D. Sanz, M.N. Arroyo, V. Navarro

The Cathedral of Santa María (Cuenca, Spain): Principal Stone Characterization And Conservation Status

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 625-632
The Cathedral of Santa María of Cuenca is one of the earliest Gothic cathedrals in Spain. The stone used in its construction mostly came from a quarry (now abandoned) in Arcos de la Cantera. It is a white lacustrine limestone with two lithotypes coded as hard (H) and soft (S). The two have similar chemical compositions, but type H has minor quartz, which type S lacks. There is also a small difference in the chromaticity in type S with respect to type H. The pore size ranges from 0.1 to 1 μm for type H and from 0.1 to 20 μm for type S. The conservation status of this stone depends on the lithotype and on the location of the stone in the monument. Type S is the most heavily affected by honeycombing. Inside the Cathedral, there is also abundant salt efflorescence due to both absorption and porosity.

Keywords: Cathedral; Cuenca; Limestone; Pore Structure; Durability; Conservation Status

V. Vasilache, I. Sandu, C.-C. Lazanu, I.G. Sandu

Archaeometalurgical Evaluation of two Spearheads from the Bronze Age

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 633-642
The paper presents the results of the conjoint MO, SEM-EDX and micro-FTIR analyses conducted on two spearhead discovered in Stuhuleț and Huși (Vaslui County, Romania), attributed to the Bronze-Age Sabatinovka culture, in order to authenticate and establish the state of preservation, and to establish the manufacturing technique (the archaeometalurgical procedure) and the provenance of the raw materials, based on the chemical composition.

Keywords: Spearheads; Bronze; Archaeometallurgy; OM; SEM-EDX; micro-FTIR

T. Grontoft

A Condition Modelling Tool for Cultural Heritage Objects

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 643-656
A modelling tool was developed, as a tutorial and for research purposes, to predict the future condition, lifetime, and time before repeated conservation intervention for cultural heritage objects, depending on their historical condition, present conservation and changes in the environment. Model application was illustrated for a locomotive exposed outdoor at the Warsaw Railway Museum, Poland, and for the Oseberg Viking ship in the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo, Norway. The modelling suggested, tentatively, that the lifetime without future conservation of the locomotive surface would be from 6 to 30 years, but that the object could last many hundred (800) years. To maintain the locomotive in the present condition conservation intervention would be needed every seven to 14 years. Shielding of the locomotive from precipitation could increase its lifetime, and time between conservation interventions, with 40%. One present conservation intervention could increase the lifetime with 20%. The lifetime of the Viking ship was suggested to be from 74 to 234 years. Conservation intervention was suggested every 15 to 66 years. Improvement of the air quality in the museum could increase its total lifetime, and time between conservation interventions, with 6%. One present conservation intervention could increase the lifetime with 26%. The most critical risk factor for the future preservation of the objects, excluding possible risks for sudden catastrophic events, was found to be to rate of any accelerating degradation processes.

Keywords: Cultural heritage objects; Condition modelling; Condition assessment; Conservation; Preventive conservation; Environnemental impact; Dose-response equation; Air quality.

P.S. Negi S.P. Subramani

Wild Edible Plant Genetic Resources for Sustainable Food Security and Livelihood of Kinnaur District, Himachal Pradesh, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 657-668
In view of changing food habits of local communities of Himachal Himalaya, a study to document the genetic resources of wild edible plant and traditional recipes was conducted in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India. Rituals and cultural beliefs of the local people of Kinnaur plays significant role in conserving biodiversity. A total of 116 plant species belonging to 42 families were recorded from the study area. Among the four major life forms, herbs contributed the highest proportion of the edible species (57) followed by trees (32), shrubs (26) and climber (1). Fruits (50) are the highly consumed plant parts, followed by leaves (33), seeds (23), bulbs (6), resin/gum (6), roots (5), flowers (4), shoots (4), bark (2) and tubers (2) respectively. Chilgoza nut is the dominant wild edible and also the main source of revenue. This includes 13 threatened species under different Red List categories of IUCN 2000 and 8 species are endemic to Western Himalayas. Allium stracheyi, Angelica glauca, Betula utilis, Bunium persicum, Dioscorea deltoidea, Hippophae spp., Juglans regia, Pinus gerardiana, Prunus armeniaca, Prunus mira and Sinopodophyllum hexandrum are highly exploited species in wild and need to be conserved.

Keywords: Kinnaur; Himachal Pradesh; Wild edible; Genetic Resource, Conservation

M.Z. Haque, M.I.H. Reza, S.A. Rahim, M.P. Abdullah, R. Elfithri, M.b. Mokhtar

Behavioral Change Due to Climate Change Effects Accelerate Tiger Human Conflicts: A Study on Sundarbans Mangrove Forests, Bangladesh

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 669-684
The change in climate has been observed over comparable periods of time. Mangrove ecosystem and its biodiversity are threatened due to climate change. Sundarbans mangrove ecoregion situated in Bangladesh (~62%) and India (~38%) is a bioclimatic zone. Sundarbans is one of the largest reserves for the Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris L) which is the top predator. Therefore, it helps to regulate the number and distribution of prey, which in turn impacts forest structure, composition and regeneration. As climate change affects the flora and fauna in this ecosystem, these may be impaired because of migration of the species. The tigers become stray from forests to human inhabitants and causes tiger human conflicts which often results in retaliatory killings of tiger and human and or livestock. Therefore, the main objective of this study is to identify the effects of climate change towards the salinity intrusion and biodiversity, modification of floral and faunal composition, habitat loss and behavioral change of wildlife, which ultimately identify the factors for accelerating tiger human conflicts. It reviewed related literature through various websites and the secondary data were quoted with necessary modification. The primary data obtained from the office records of Bangladesh Forest Department and a social surveying was conducted on livelihood profile of the people living surrounding the Sundarbans to identify the relations between tiger attacking and their livelihood and living style. We used ArcGIS 9.3 to visualize the tiger habitat and trigger up the causes of root of conflicts between human and tiger. The results reveal the climate change effects in the Sundarbans Mangrove forest through changing its biodiversity composition in terms of loss of wildlife habitats which is responsible for accelerating tiger human conflicts. It suggests, a social and cultural revolution for sustainable alternative livelihood of forest-dependent population i.e., Alternative Income Generation (AIG), modification of the formal legal system, institutional development and in depth research can minimize these issues towards the sustainability of Sundarbans mangrove forest.

Keywords: Climate change; Sundarbans mangrove forests; tiger human conflicts; wildlife habitat; stray tiger.

D. Iskandar, D. Sugandi

Flood Mitigation Efforts in the Capital Region Of Jakarta

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 685-696
A flood is a disaster with such highly negative impacts on the loss of life and property that it has to be mitigated. In this regard, the present research aims to: measure the rainfall volume that causes flood and analyze the efforts of reducing the flood volume caused by rainfall in the Region of Jakarta. An experimental method was applied to measure rainfall and run-off volumes stored in infiltration wells. The research was conducted in the following stages: analyzing land use and analyzing rainfall and surface runoff volumes. We found that changes in land cover negatively affect the land’s ability to absorb rainfall. Land cover formed by vegetation will be different from impermeable land cover, such as houses, offices, pavements, and hotels. To reduce potential flood is achieved by reducing the surface runoff volume. Meanwhile, in order to reduce the runoff volume, an infiltration well that can accommodate 5m3 of water can be constructed for every 100m2 of developed area. With a number of 664,701,800 infiltration wells, as much as 3,323,509m3 of rainfall volume can be collected in those wells. Finally, with these infiltration wells, the Special Capital Region of Jakarta will be free of flood.

Keywords: Rainfall; Flood; Land cover; Impermeable layers; Infiltration wells

M. Gautam, S. Gupta

Population Status and Conservation Requirement of some Endangered Plants Growing in Dayalbagh Educational Institute, Agra

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 697-706
The study area is rich in plant diversity but there is an urgent need of conservation. Some rare and endangered plants are still found abundantly in the region, but without protection these plants may become endangered in the near future. Endangered plant species have been categorized by the IUCN (International union for conservation of nature) as the ones likely to become extinct. When the death rate of the species exceeds its birth rate for a prolonged duration, that species is called endangered and eventually it may become extinct. Such are Adhatoda vasica, Ageratum conysoides, Agave americana, Aloe vera, Ammania baccifera, Alternanthera sessilis, Asparagus adscendens, Cactus, Centella asiatica, Costus speciosus, Chlorophytum tuberosum, Gloriosa superba, Piper longum, Sinopodophyllum hexandrum, Rauwolfia serpentina, Saraca asoca, Strebles asper, Tribulus terrestris, Withania somnifera, Zamia pygmeae. Among these threatened plants 4 species were assessed as Critically Endangered (CR), 7 as Endangered (EW), 2 as Vulnerable (VU), 5 as Least Concern (LC) and 1 as Data deficient (DD) by the IUCN Red List in Uttar Pradesh and in the study area. The extinction and decline in plant diversity is caused by many factors, such as population growth, high rates of habitat modification and deforestation, climate change, pollution, the spread of invasive alien species and over-exploitation. Threatened species are being rehabilitated and restored to a protected area from their former habitats.

Keywords: Threatened plants; Population status; Conservation requirement; Importance Value Index (IVI)

H. Ali, M. Anwar, M.A. Nawaz

Population Density and Habitat Use of Himalayan Ibex (Capra Ibex Sibirica) in Nagar Valley, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 707-714
Monitoring of animal populations and their habitat is necessary to conserve, manage or harvest species and to understand their population trend. Present study determined the population size and habitat use of Himalayan Ibex in Nagar Valley of Gilgit-Baltistan. Vantage point count method was applied to estimate population. During winter, 478 Ibex were observed in 25 groups, with mean group size of (19.12 SD= 8.79) and a population density of 0.32 animals/km2, while during spring 456 Ibex were observed in 24 groups with mean group size of (19 SD= 8.65), and with a population density of 0.33 animals/km2. A sex ratio of 1.24 females/male in winter, 1.33 females/male in spring, 1.36 females/young in winter and 1.25 females/young in spring was recorded. A total of 47 plant species were identified in Ibex habitat, dominated by herbaceous species. It prefers precipitous habitat with 60º-70 º slopes angle, and closer to escape terrain between 21m-50m distance (69.23%). It also showed preference for southern aspect (53.8%) with less snow accumulation, the majority of Ibex were observed between 2500m and 3500m (53.8%). Major threats to Ibex in study area include poaching, competition with livestock and weak watch and ward system.

Keywords: Himalayan ibex; Habitat preference; Population density; Nagar valley

R.R. Butarbutar, L. Hakim, I.R. Sastrahidayat, Soemarno

Plants as Flagship Species in Tourism Destination: A Case Study at Mount Mahawu Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 715-728
This study aims to identify the plants as a flagship species in tourism destination based on the perception of tourists. Field survey was conducted in Mt. Mahawu nature-based tourism area in Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Field survey was done by distributed questionnaire to the 196 respondents. Respondent asked to identify the preferred main tourism attraction in Mt. Mahawu and respondent’s perception to the plant species diversity which can potentially become tourism destination flagship. Among the numerous natural tourism object in Mt. Mahawu, this research confirms that plants are one of the most interesting tourism attraction in Mt. Mahawu. The important plants species found in the area have become flagships, both in term of tourism interesting object and conservation issues, encompasses Nepenthes maxima Reinw. ex Nees, Blechnum capense (L.) Schltdl., Pinus merkusii Jungh. & de Vriese, Phajus sp., Tabernaemontana pandacaqui Poir, Macaranga minahassae Whitmore, Swietenia macrophylla King, Bulbophyllum lobii Lindl, Euphorbia cotinifolia L. and Shefflera elliptica (Blume) Harms. The conservation effort to preserve such species was important in order to enhance tourism destination competitiveness in Mt. Mahawu.

Keywords: Ecotourism; Biodiversity Conservation; Mount Mahawu; Flagship Species.

G. Romanescu, C. Zaharia, A.V. Sandu, D.T. Juravle

The Annual and Multi-Annual Variation of the Minimum Discharge in The Miletin Catchment (Romania). An Important Issue of Water Conservation

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 729-746
The Miletin catchment is situated in the central-eastern sector of the Jijia-Bahlui depression, a component of the Moldavian Plateau, which spans Eastern Romania. Climatic conditions feature average multi-annual precipitations of 500–550 mm/year, an average evapotranspiration of 650–700 mm/year, and temperatures often exceeding 30°C during the summer and down to -30°C during the winter. Due to these conditions, the local rivers (such as the Miletin) can only have a permanent discharge if strong underground waters feed them. This situation is only found in the case of large rivers, which never dry up. Data recording was performed for a period of 41 years. The lowest (minimum minimorum) discharge was 0 m3/s in the upper sector, and it was recorded in 1968, 1969, 1986, and 1987. The lowest discharge in the middle sector was of 0.001 m3/s, recorded only once in 1990. In the lower sector, downstream from the Halceni pound, the lowest discharge was of 0.002 m3/s, recorded in 2006 and 2008. These lowest discharge levels occurred during the summer and winter. Dry-spells and water collecting, increasingly more common during the last few years, means that the hydrostatic level of the groundwater regularly drops by 1–2 cm each year.

Keywords: Drought period; Drying-up; Economic impact; Minimum discharge; Standard deviation


J. Gimenez

Egyptian Blue and/or Atacamite in an Ancient Egyptian Coffin

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 747-749
This work deals with the composition of the blue and green pigments used in the wooden sarcophagus studied by Abdelaal et al. and published in 2014 in this journal. From the published data, a degradation of the originally used Egyptian blue pigment is proposed. The presence of chlorine in the pigment deduced from SEM-EDS analyses and the greenish hue observed point to the formation of a certain amount of atacamite (or one of its polymorphs, paratacamite or clionoatacamite) because of the Egyptian blue degradation process named copper chloride cancer.

Keywords: Egyptian blue; Cuprorivaite; Atacamite; Copper chloride cancer; Sarcophagus; Ancient Egypt;

Publication date 15.12.2015     


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