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Subject: Pest management

Pest management

From: Ercole Gialdi <rgi>
Date: Friday, January 28, 2000
Ken Myers <kenmyers1 [at] mindspring__com> writes

>Within a gallery devoted primarily to costume and textile items, the
>exhibits department of our museum intends to display as an exhibit
>prop a large bale of used clothing and other textile items which is
>being donated by the local Goodwill (approximately 6'X3'X3' and
>weighing 1400 lbs.).  Goodwill bales those donated items deemed
>unsaleable in their store locations. Knowing neither the
>"provenance" of the items compressed within the bale nor their
>condition (clean/dirty or dry/damp), I have some reservations about
>introducing it into the gallery environment if it might potentially
>be infested with pests of some kind.  We have wondered about the
>possibility of having the bale fumigated somehow but in initial
>telephone queries have had no success locating a source for this
>service.  In the absence of fumigation, as a minimum measure we are
>considering accepting...

It is possible to "clean" also large objects in a clean way.
Traditional fumigants kill insect pest by poisoning them and these
chemical compounds are dangerous toxic substances. They are absorbed
by the objects and then released to environment when the objects are
back to their original rooms.

Pesticides are carcinogenic,  mutagenic and neuro-endocrine
disruptors and their use is always risky; moreover they alter the
materials.  May be your bale of used clothes doesn't need a lot of
precautions against colour alterations, but in general, this must be
avoided for the Cultural Heritage. At R.G.I. we developed and
patented the system VELOXY by which it is possible to control the
biological infestations, with 100% success, just by fumigating the
objects with the common air we normally breath. The objects (made of
wood, paper, parchment, leather, tissue or composite) are sealed
into tailored enclosures, made on the site with a special plastic
film; then, by VELOXY, all the oxygen is extracted from the air and
the object stays three weeks under anoxic environment. In a couple
of days all the adults are killed, after  7-8 days the eggs die
and eventually the larvae and pupae in 15-18 days. Then the
enclosure is cut and the object, that has been remaining in its
place for all the period, is free from any specie of insect at any
stage of its life cycle.

VELOXY doesn't involve the handling of risky compounds so can be
operated directly by the museum's personnel that is trained in a
couple of days. A lot of conservation institutes in Italy and Europe
have been using (and use) VELOXY with full success.

The system VELOXY, that is rented (at least for two months) by
R.G.I. at a very affordable price, includes the devices and the
plastic film to prepare the enclosures, valves, fittings, and the
sensor to monitor the residual concentration of oxygen . Note that,
in two months, a large number of objects can be treated  in a way
safe for health and clean for the environment. The permanence under
anoxia is protective for the objects so the method can be applied
also as prevention "In case of doubt ..... let the objects decide".

Let me know your opinion,

Ercole Gialdi
R.G.I. Resource Group Integrator S.r.l.
V.le Nazario SAURO  no 8
16145 - Genova, Italy
+39 10 3626002
Fax: +39 10 3109440

                  Conservation DistList Instance 13:42
                Distributed: Wednesday, February 2, 2000
                       Message Id: cdl-13-42-016
Received on Friday, 28 January, 2000

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