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Unveiling the importance of diffusion on the deterioration of cellulose acetate artefacts: The profile of plasticiser loss as assessed by infrared microscopy

Da Ros, S; Curran, K; Del Gaudio, I; Bronwyn, O; Townsend, JH; Cane, D; Gili, A; (2021) Unveiling the importance of diffusion on the deterioration of cellulose acetate artefacts: The profile of plasticiser loss as assessed by infrared microscopy. In: Transcending Boundaries: Integrated Approaches to Conservation. ICOM-CC 19th Triennial Conference Preprints, Beijing, 17–21 May 2021. International Council of Museums - Committee for Conservation (ICOM-CC): Beijing, China. Green open access

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Abstract

Cellulose acetate (CA) artefacts are one of the most valued plastic items in museum collections and are known to present stability issues, with the loss of plasticiser being among the main degradation processes. This study investigates the concentration distribution of diethyl phthalate (DEP) plasticiser throughout the dimensions of CA using infrared microscopy for the first time. Artificial ageing experiments using reference and historic CA plasticised with DEP were performed to assess the change in the concentration profiles as a function of ageing time. Our analysis indicates that the plasticiser loss from CA artefacts is likely controlled by its diffusion, resulting in a concentration gradient in which lower plasticiser contents are observed at the external layers of the material.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Unveiling the importance of diffusion on the deterioration of cellulose acetate artefacts: The profile of plasticiser loss as assessed by infrared microscopy
Event: ICOM-CC 19th Triennial Conference
Location: Beijing
Dates: 17 May 2021 - 21 May 2021
ISBN-13: 978-2-491997-14-4
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.icom-cc-publications-online.org/4493/U...
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: cellulose acetate, infrared microscopy, plasticiser loss, concentration gradient
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10125200
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