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Subject: Microwave fumigation

Microwave fumigation

From: Mary-Lou Florian <mflorian<-a>
Date: Monday, April 4, 2005
Sebastian Georgiew <sebastian [at] students__lincoln__ac__uk> writes

>I am currently researching the possibility to use microwave heat as
>a way to eradicate insects in wooden objects.

I tested the use of microwave on herbarium specimens a number of
years ago and decided against its use.  The striking effect
applicable to wood was that coniferous tree cones opened and on
opening the microwave there was a small explosive flash of  resin
burning. The paper on which the plant specimens were attached curled
from drying but did regain moisture after a short time in the
ambient environment. The  type of water loss is  important to know.
If it was the bound water this is never regained and the wood may be
brittle. If it is the adsorbed water that is lost it will be
normally regained at ambient room environment. Whether it is the
bound or adsorbed water is important to determine. The rapid water
loss may cause dimensional changes which may be shown in cracks-
this must be tested.

Mary-Lou Florian
Conservation Scientist

                  Conservation DistList Instance 18:49
                 Distributed: Thursday, April 14, 2005
                       Message Id: cdl-18-49-003
Received on Monday, 4 April, 2005

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