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Subject: Update on mass deacidification at Library of Congress

Update on mass deacidification at Library of Congress

From: Kenneth E. Harris <khar>
Date: Friday, June 3, 1994
LC Mass Deacidification Program
June 1994 Status Report

During the past year, the Library of Congress worked actively with Akzo
Chemical Co. on further refinement of the DEZ deacidification process,
and an LC-appointed team has been conducting an evaluation of
Preservation Technologies, Inc.'s Bookkeeper process.

AKZO: DEZ PROCESS.  A team of technical specialists from the chemical,
scientific, and library fields helped the Library design and evaluate a
research and development project aimed at solving DEZ treatment problems
identified during the Library's earlier deacidification procurement
effort.  The Swiss Federal Archives cooperated with the Library and
participated on the technical management team.  The Library also
contracted with the University of Houston and the University of
Delaware, where fifteen laboratory experiments were conducted to emulate
conditions in the Akzo plant in Texas.  This laboratory research focused
attention on reducing book and permeation temperatures as a primary
means of eliminating or significantly reducing previously observed
problems such as odors and minor physical damage in treated books.  The
test runs conducted for the Library demonstrated significant progress in
addressing these issues.

In December, Akzo Chemical Co. announced that it had made a business
decision to withdraw from the deacidification business; the company
stopped treating books for customers, including LC, in April.  The
Library hopes to complete its report about the DEZ R&D initiative and
submit it to Congress in June.  The report will be based in part upon
assessment of the odor level and physical condition of books treated in
LC's test runs.  The latter assessment, conducted by conservators and a
LC-management deacidification assessment team, cannot be concluded until
books from each of LC's test runs are returned from Texas.  As of early
June, books from one of the final test runs had not been received back
at the Library for evaluation.

PTI: BOOKKEEPER PROCESS.  The second phase of the Library's
deacidification program seeks to evaluate and encourage the development
of other deacidification processes.  After the Library advertised the
availability of this evaluation and testing program, Preservation
Technologies, Inc. (PTI) of Pittsburgh was the only company that
requested a formal evaluation of their process, known as Bookkeeper.

The Library has employed an excellent team of technical specialists in
the Pittsburgh area to help it evaluate the Bookkeeper process.  In
addition, the Library contracted with the independent Institute of Paper
Science and Technology (IPST) testing laboratory in Atlanta to obtain
physical and chemical test results on Bookkeeper-treated books; and the
Library asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to assess the
impact of this process.

PTI has treated library and test books for the Library's technical
evaluation team.  Samples were aged at the Library and are being tested
by IPST.  After it receives final IPST test data and the EPA report,
LC's evaluation team will complete its report concerning the Bookkeeper
process, probably in August.  Preliminary results received to date from
the evaluation team, IPST, and the EPA look promising.

Reports.  The report about Bookkeeper and the Library's report on the
DEZ process will be submitted to Congress with recommendations; as soon
as they are available, both reports will be shared with the library and
preservation communities in the U.S. and worldwide.

[For further information, contact Kenneth Harris in the LC Preservation
Directorate on 202-707-1054; Fax: 202-707-3434]


                       Technical Resources

                         Winston Atkins
                      Technical Consultant
                         Yale University

                        Andrew R. Barron
                       Associate Professor
                       Harvard University

                     George (Larry) L. Eitel
                  Consulting Chemical Engineer

                        Kenneth E. Harris
                  Preservation Projects Officer
                    Preservation Directorate
                       Library of Congress

                        Christian Herren
                       Research Assistant
                 Swiss Federal Propellent Plant

                          David Hoffman
                       Associate Professor
                      University of Houston

                       Terry Orban Norris
                    Pulp and Paper Technology

                          Donald Sebera
                        Chemist (retired)
             Preservation Research & Testing Office
                       Library of Congress

                         Chandru Shahani
                        Research Officer
             Preservation Research & Testing Office
                       Library of Congress

                        Klaus H. Theopold
                       Associate Professor
                     University of Delaware

                          Terry Wallis
                       Library of Congress

                       LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
                       TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
                      "BOOKKEEPER" PROCESS

                       Technical Resources

                Sally Buchanan (Team Chairperson)
                       Associate Professor
            School of Library and Information Science
                    University of Pittsburgh

                          Wendy Bennett
                     Carnegie Museum of Art

                        Michael M. Domach
                      Chemical Engineering
                   Carnegie Mellon University

                        Kenneth E. Harris
                  Preservation Projects Officer
                    Preservation Directorate
                       Library of Congress

                          Susan Melnick
               Library and Preservation Consultant

                         Chandru Shahani
                        Research Officer
            Preservation Research and Testing Office
                       Library of Congress

                       Charlotte A. Tancin
           Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation
                   Carnegie Mellon University

                          Paul Whitmore
              Director, Art Conservation Laboratory
                        Mellon Institute
                   Carnegie Mellon University!
Kenneth Harris
Library of Congress
Preservation Directorate

                  Conservation DistList Instance 7:87
                   Distributed: Friday, June 3, 1994
                        Message Id: cdl-7-87-005
Received on Friday, 3 June, 1994

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