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Subject: Water pipes in archival storage

Water pipes in archival storage

From: Samuel Anderson <sam>
Date: Thursday, February 9, 2006
Bruce Bumbarger <bbumbarg [at] haverford__edu> writes

>Moving the pipes does not seem to be an option. We've been told that
>some sort of catchment could be fabricated to run under the pipes.
>This might help in the case of minor leaks, but given the size of
>the pipes would probably be of little use in the event of a
>catastrophic failure.
>
>We've been told that this is the only area available for our
>expansion. We're hesitant to accept it knowing the potential for
>problems, but also have a great need for more space. Has anyone
>dealt with a similar situation? Any suggestions for things we should
>consider in reaching a decision?

Assuming that at least one of the piping fluids is under significant
pressure, any "catchment"  would have to form a complete
encapsulation, not just a pan underneath, if you were to drastically
reduce the risk from a leak.  A key question would be whether
building a "chase" around these pipes would reduce too much the
space available for your collections, or cause other problems like
inadequate headroom clearance.

I would recommend you have a mechanical engineer and/or architect
review the situation and make some suggestions; even if you cannot
move them entirely perhaps a relocation of a portion of their
routing would significantly reduce your risks.  Another approach
might be to place a circulation pathway under the pipes, with
shields on either side of their path, so that any leak would fall
onto the floor rather than onto collections.

Samuel M. Anderson, Principal
Samuel Anderson Architects
505 Eighth Avenue
Suite 2500
New York, NY  10018
USA
212-564-7002  x111
Fax: 212-564-8233


                                  ***
                  Conservation DistList Instance 19:38
                 Distributed: Monday, February 20, 2006
                       Message Id: cdl-19-38-002
                                  ***
Received on Thursday, 9 February, 2006

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