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Evaluation of atmospheric corrosivity index in museums by RFID sensors: application to the monitoring of pollution emitted by archeological woods
* 1 , 1 , 1 , 2 , 2 , 2 , 3 , 3
1  University of Western Britanny, France
2  ARC-Nucléart CEA, France
3  French Corrosion Institute, France


Museum environmental monitoring is an important issue for artefact conservation and requires the development of systems able to measure temperature, relative humidity, as well as to detect very low concentrations of different atmospheric pollutants. Improper environmental conditions accelerate indeed corrosion and degradation of many materials including metals, papers and textiles. This effect is even amplified in closed environment, like in exhibition rooms and showcases, where temperature and humidity gradients introduce micro-climatic problems. While numerous systems exist for monitoring temperature and humidity, developing low cost sensors sensitive to the presence of pollutants and hence to the environmental corrosivity is still a challenge. Within the EU-SensMat project (, we recently demonstrated the interest of the RFID technology for the realization of such type of sensors. The method is based on an RFID tag which electromagnetically interacts with a thin metallic sensitive layer. Corrosion of such layer by pollutants modifies the signal received by the RFID reader leading to the possibility of extracting the corrosivity index via standard (ISO 11844). This type of sensors will be described in details at the conference. For this purpose, an application to the monitoring of pollution emitted by archeological woods containing pyrite (FeS2) at ARC-Nucléart, an institute specializing in the conservation-restoration of archeology and historical wood, will be presented. Due to the possibility of extending the number of such low cost sensors, the monitoring was made in several rooms/locations within the building. As it will be shown, detection of pollutants by silver sensors is correlated to the formation of silver sulphide on the sensitive layers.

Keywords: environmental corrosivity, air quality; autonomous sensors; RFID; archeological wood, pyrite