Use of Silanol-Terminated Polydimethylsiloxane in the Conservation of Waterlogged Archaeological Wood

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Publication Type:

Journal Article


Kavvouras, Panayiotis; Moraitou, Georgianna; Kostarelou, Chari; Zisi, Angeliki; Petrou, Maria;


Studies in Conservation, Volume 54, Number 2, p.65-76 (2009)


The efficiency of a system containing silanol-terminated polydimethylsiloxane (silanol), a cross-linker and a catalyst for the conservation of waterlogged Neolithic archaeological wood has been evaluated. The conservation procedure presented in this work requires four main steps: dehydration of waterlogged wood with acetone, exchange of acetone with turpentine, silanol impregnation and curing. The final product of curing is a three-dimensional polysiloxane network, which in fact constitutes the conservation material. To optimize the procedure, the effect of artefact size, dehydration agent used, and curing conditions on the antishrink efficiency (ASE) have been studied. The pine and oak waterlogged archaeological wood samples treated accordingly preserved their identity perfectly. Their diagnostic attributes have been preserved well. No collapsing or shrinking was observed. The colour, weight and feel were those of natural wood.