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  • Writer's pictureWanja Wedekind

Contribution at SWBSS ASIA 2023: Hot-lime mortar used as poultice for desalination



SWBSS is the conference series “Salt Weathering of Buildings and Stone Sculptures,” started in 2008. The past series were held in Copenhagen (2008), Limassol (2011), Brussel (2014), Potsdam (2017), and Delft (2021). The conference aims at bringing together conservators, restorers, engineers, architects, academics, students and experienced researchers to contribute thereby to the promotion of research and development within the field of salt weathering of porous materials. So far this conference series has been held only in European countries. Salt weathering of porous materials is often not recognized as a major factor in building deterioration. Often, only moisture damage is detected and drainage is recommended. This does not solve the actual problem and in many cases also leads to serious consequential damage. We also present a corresponding case in our article.

The conference was mainly organized by Prof. Dr. Masaru Abuku (Kindai University) and took place in Nara/Japan. The orgenizers received around 30 contributions, consisting of full papers and extended abstracts, from 10 countries. This clearly confirms the relevance of the conference.

ACS was regularly involved with its own contributions at the conferences. On 22.09.2023 we will participate with a presentation under the title: "Desalination of the balustrate of Goslar townhall using directed moisture flow". The proceedings of the conference will soon be available online as a PDF.

In our contribution we presented a case study a stone staircase with a balustrade was employed to perform a directed moisture. The procedure can be used with thin-walled parapets of historical buildings, which often have a decorative function as well. The treatment presented in this article was realized on the staircase of the medieval town hall of the UNESCO World Heritage city of Goslar in Germany. The staircase with or- namental decoration was heavily affected by road salt. Here, a desalination process with a directed water transport was used over a large area. In this case a hot lime mortar was applied as the poultice material. The rock properties and preliminary investigations of the salt content are present- ed and the desalination results are specified both qualitatively as well as quantitatively.

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