Monitoring of Indoor Microclimatic Conditions of an Eighteenth-century Church, with Wireless Sensors

Monitoring of Indoor Microclimatic Conditions of an Eighteenth-century Church, with Wireless Sensors

Mauro CannistraroRoberta Restivo

University of Ferrara, Ferrara 44121, Italy

University of Messina - Villaggio S. Agata 98166, Italy

Corresponding Author Email:
6 March 2018
| |
30 March 2018
| | Citation



The correct storage and protection of works of sacred art, requires the guarantee of the optimal conditions of some parameters affecting the indoor microclimate of the place in which they are located. The temperature and humidity, are two of the most important parameters of the indoor microclimate. To avoid critical issues of the preservation process, these parameters must be kept constant during the day at each point of the place. In the conservation of works of religious art, there are two conflicting requirements: the use of the works themselves, and the need to protect the objects exposed to the deterioration, due at environmental factors. This can be achieved, by creating suitable conditions for their conservation. The arts work, usually are constituted by old materials that require for proper storage conditions depending on the type of material that constitutes them. In many cases, the ideal environmental conditions for the objects are not compatible with those most appropriate for the public. In this complex scenario the ecclesiastical monitoring, and its temperature and humidity control, exists a protocol unique accepted internationally, that establishing reference limits for the various parameters, and the only recommendations are contained in the (Italian Standardization body) UNI 10829/99. The most suitable approach, widely recognized is the "preventive conservation." This can be achieved through a mixture of measures and strategies, adapted to the case, aimed at minimizing the impact of environmental factors on the exhibited artifacts, to slow down the degradation. In this paper we present the results of a study focused on the use of wireless sensors for environmental monitoring. In this scenario with the use of the thermo-hygrometric sensors, you can realize systematic and adequate conditions.


sacred art, conservation, monitoring temperature and humidity, ancient churches, wireless sensor

1. Introduction
2. The Role of Thermo-hygrometric Parameters in the Conservation of Sacred Art
3. Deterioration Mechanisms
4. The Case Study Monitoring
5. Diagnosis of the Sensors for Microclimatic Monitoring
6. the Monitoring and the Analysis of Results
7. Conclusions

[1] Camuffo D. (1998). Microclimate for cultural Heritage. Elsevier, USA. 

[2] Accardo G, Camuffo D. (1980). Microclimate inside the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua. St. Cons. 25: 15–17. 

[3]  Bonacina C, Baggio P, Cappelletti F, Romagnoni P, Stevan AG. (2015). The Scrovegni Chapel: The results of over 20 years of indoor climate monitoring. Energy Buildings 95: 144–152. 25.Supplement-1.15

[4] Boyes N. (1999). Historic Scotland. In Aspects of Stone Weathering, Decay and Conservation. Imperial College Press: London, UK.

[5] Rosslyn Chapel. Ongoing Care; Rosslyn Chapel: Roslin, UK, 2015., accessed on Oct. 13, 2016.

[6] UNI 10829 Historical and Cultural Heritage. Environmental Conditions for Preservation. (1999). Ente Italiano di Unificazione. Milan, Italy.

[7] ISO 18902. (2013). Imaging Materials—Processed Imaging Materials—Albums, Framing and Storage Materials; International Organization for Standardization. Geneva, Switzerland.

[8] ISO 18911. (2010). Imaging Materials—Processed Safety Photographic Films—Storage Practices; International Organization for Standardization. Geneva, Switzerland.

[9] EN 15757. (2010). Conservation of Cultural Property; British Standards Institution (BSI). London, UK.

[10] PAS 198. (2012). Specification for Environmental Conditions for Cultural Collections; British Standards Institute. London, UK.

[11] Schito E, Testi D, Grassi W. (2015). Energy efficient methodologies for microclimate control in museum environments: A state of the art. In ASME-ATI-UIT 2015. Conference Proceeding Thermal Energy Systems: Production, Storage. Utilization and the Environment. In Albano E. (ed). Napoli, Italy.

[12] Papa R. (1999). Reflections on the foundations of sacred art. In Euntes docete, Roma.

[13] Aghemo C, Filippi M. (1996). Prato - Environmental conditions for the historic and artistic heritage conservation, Giorgio Rota.

[14] Bernardi A, Camuffo D, Sturaro G, Valentino A. (1998). Microclimatic investigations for the conservation and restoration in indoor and outdoor environments. Technology Highlights Information - Numero monografico Conservazione e Restauro.

[15] Costanzo S, Cusumano A, Giaconia C, Giaconia G. (2006). Preservation of the artistic heritage within the seat of the Chancellorship of the University of Palermo A proposal on a methodology regarding an environmental investigation according to Italian Standards. Building and Environment.

[16] La Gennusa M, Rizzo G, Scaccianoce G, Nicoletti F. (2005). Control of indoor environments in heritage buildings: experimental measurements in an old Italian museum and proposal of a methodology. Journal of Cultural Heritage 6: 147–155.

[17] Cannistraro M, Cannistraro G, Piccolo A, Restivo R. (2013). Potential and limits of oxidative photocatalysis and possible applications in the field of cultural heritage. Advanced Materials Research 787: 111-117.

[18] Cannistraro G, Cannistraro M, Restivo R. (2013). Messina’s historical buildings after the earthquake of 1908: Energy and environmental analysis through a global screening methodology. International Journal of Heat & Technology 31(2): 155, 158.

[19] Mukhopadhyay N. (2016). Heat conduction model development of a cold storage using EPS insulation. AMSE Journals–2016-Series: Modelling B 85(1): 18-27. 

[20] Kanaan M, Chahine K. (2018). CFD study of ventilation for indoor multi-zone transformer substation. International Journal of Heat and Technology 36(1): 88-94.