Refinements Introduced in the Oddy Test Methodology

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Publication Type:

Journal Article


Capucine Korenberg; Melanie Keable; Julie Phippard; Adrian Doyle;


Studies in Conservation, Routledge, Volume 63, Number 1, p.2-12 (2018)


ABSTRACTThe ‘Oddy test’ is an accelerated corrosion test introduced in the 1970s at the British Museum to identify materials likely to emit volatile substances that could harm museum artefacts. It is carried out in many museums all around the world, but not always using the same methodology, which makes it difficult to compare and share test results between institutions. Refinements to the Oddy test methodology have been implemented at the British Museum over the last decade and the aim of this paper is to present these and promote consistency across institutions. The modifications introduced concern the method used to wash the glassware, the preparation of the metal coupons, and standard methods for preparing samples of liquid coatings, adhesives, and adhesive tapes. Finally, conducting Oddy tests is time consuming and measures employed at the British Museum to reduce the number of materials to be tested and streamline testing are described.