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The effects of salt crystallization in stone and the possible use of salt crystallization inhibitors

Atkinson, Catherine E; (1996) The effects of salt crystallization in stone and the possible use of salt crystallization inhibitors. Masters thesis (M.Phil), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The thesis concerns the effects of salts in stone, and the possibilities for reducing or eliminating the weathering effect of salts in stone artifacts and architecture. It is based on a literature survey and laboratory experiments. The literature survey includes the various theories concerning the deterioration of stone due to salts, particularly the effects of crystallization and hydration pressures. The geology of the types of stone often used in building and decoration, and of the stone used in the experimental part of the research is also included. Previous and present methods for eliminating and preventing deterioration of stone is followed by an introduction to salt crystallization inhibitors, what they are, and how they are thought to be effective. This is followed by results of the experimental research carried out, which includes tests to establish the water absorption and desorption curves for samples of stone, four different salts, and salt-laden stone. Accelerated crystallization tests were carried out in order to observe deterioration due to the presence of sodium sulphate and sodium chloride in stone. Four different phosphonate based inhibitors and one anti-caking agent were tested with sodium sulphate and sodium chloride to determine differences in growth of the salt crystals from solution. Some variations in the macroscopic formation of the sodium chloride crystals was visible, in terms of smaller crystals, and more needle-like crystals with the presence of potassium ferrocyanide (anti-caking agent). However, none of the five inhibitors seemed to reduce the presence or amount of salt on the surface. Analysis included the use of reflective and polarizing microscopes, and the Scanning Electron Microscope, as well as macroscopic observation. The thesis includes suggestions for further research.

Type: Thesis (Masters)
Qualification: M.Phil
Title: The effects of salt crystallization in stone and the possible use of salt crystallization inhibitors
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Communication and the arts
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10103597
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