Long-term monitoring of fresco paintings in the cathedral of Valencia (Spain) through humidity and temperature sensors in various locations for preventive conservation

Autores UPV
Revista Sensors


We describe the performance of a microclimate monitoring system that was implemented for the preventive conservation of the Renaissance frescoes in the apse vault of the Cathedral of Valencia, that were restored in 2006. This system comprises 29 relative humidity (RH) and temperature sensors: 10 of them inserted into the plaster layer supporting the fresco paintings, 10 sensors in the walls close to the frescoes and nine sensors measuring the indoor microclimate at different points of the vault. Principal component analysis was applied to RH data recorded in 2007. The analysis was repeated with data collected in 2008 and 2010. The resulting loading plots revealed that the similarities and dissimilarities among sensors were approximately maintained along the three years. A physical interpretation was provided for the first and second principal components. Interestingly, sensors recording the highest RH values correspond to zones where humidity problems are causing formation of efflorescence. Recorded data of RH and temperature are discussed according to Italian Standard UNI 10829 (1999). © 2011 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.