JAIC 2004, Volume 43, Number 1, Article 6 (pp. 75 to 89)
JAIC online
Journal of the American Institute for Conservation
JAIC 2004, Volume 43, Number 1, Article 6 (pp. 75 to 89)

THE USE OF CYCLODODECANE AS A TEMPORARY BARRIER FOR WATER-SENSITIVE INK ON ARCHAEOLOGICAL CERAMICS DURING DESALINATION

VANESSA MUROS, & JOHN HIRX


ABSTRACT—This article discusses a preliminary study into the use of cyclododecane as a temporary barrier for the desalination of inscribed archaeological ceramics. Prior to desalination, pigmented or water-sensitive areas on ceramic objects are often consolidated with a resin. This process may alter the appearance of the object even after the resin has been removed. Cyclododecane, a volatile binder, has been used in the field of paper conservation for temporarily fixing water-sensitive media during aqueous treatments. This technique was adapted to conduct tests to determine whether water-sensitive media on archaeological materials could be temporarily protected with cyclododecane during desalination. Several marked modern terracotta samples were coated with cyclododecane using various application methods, and the samples were immersed or poulticed in tests simulating desalination. With the results obtained from these tests, an inscription on an Egyptian ostracon was coated with cyclododecane and desalinated. The results of the experiments and case study show that cyclododecane, when applied as a melt, offers considerable protection for water-sensitive ink during the desalination of archaeological ceramics and is a viable alternative to other materials commonly used for this purpose.
[Spanish Abstract] [French Abstract]

Article Sections:

1. INTRODUCTION
2. WORKING PROPERTIES OF CYCLODODECANE
3. TESTS USING MODERN TERRACOTTA SAMPLES
4. CASE STUDY: THE DESALINATION OF AN EGYPTIAN OSTRACON
5. CONCLUSIONS
a: Appendix , Notes , Materials , References , Author Information
Entire Article

Copyright 2004 American Institution for Conservation of Historic & Artistic Works