National Gallery Light Sources website

Resource

This website explains what Spectral Power Distribution is and how it can be used as a comparator to evaluate the efficiency and impact of different light sources. This is an excellent resource for any museum wishing to understand the environmental and conservation impact of different light sources or considering a move to LED lighting.

Air pollution advice sheet

Resource

Museum objects require a certain kind of environment, which includes an atmosphere free of dust and pollutants. This fact sheet from describes basic types of air pollution: acidic and oxidising subtances; particulate pollutants, and how to protect museum collections from damage caused by them.

Managing the preservation of library and archive collections in historic buildings

Resource

This leaflet aims to help librarians and archivists working in a historic setting to manage preservation projects and achieve results. It focuses mainly on the environmental problems common in historic buildings and outlines ways of tackling these which have been distilled from research into the library, archive and museum preservation literature.

Basic preservation for library and archive collections

Resource

Preventive measures can considerably extend the useful life of collections, and are usually much more cost-effective than interventive measures taken to remedy damage after deterioration has taken place. This publication outlines external causes of deterioration of collections, including poor handling or storage, theft or vandalism, fire and flood, pests, pollution, light and incorrect temperature and relative humidity, and indicates the preventive measures that should be taken.

Using cut flowers and potted plants in museums

Resource

The use of plant and flower materials in museums is growing in popularity as they are increasingly opened for special events, entertaining, and to decorate permanent displays. This fact sheet outlines notes on managing risk and the prevention of damage to museum objects from pest infestation, pollen staining and from localised increase in humidity as well as scratches and chips from flower pots or containers placed on museum objects.

CAT Condition Assessment Tool

Resource

CAT was originally designed by the Scottish Museums Council as a tool to help museum staff and conservators to better assess collection condition and use the information generated more effectively. Its features allow non-conservators to undertake basic assessments of collection condition with a little basic training and the agreement of the meaning of terms.

Monitoring light and UV levels in museums

Resource

Monitoring light and ultraviolet radiation in a museum is an important part of environmental management. This advice sheet introduces the basics of monitoring light and ultraviolet radiation and describes the available equipment (light meters, ultraviolet meters, combined lux and UV meters, dosimeters, data-loggers, telemetric sensors and hard-wired systems), how to look after it, maintain it and use it to best effect.

Calibrating a thermohygrograph

Resource

Thermohygrographs are used to measure temperature and relative humidity, both environmental risks which can directly affect the preservation of museum objects. In this short film from SHARE Museums East, conservator Juliane Ovenden demonstrates how to calibrate a thermohygrograph.

Glossary of environmental monitoring

Resource

Environmental monitoring refers to the measurement and recording of environmental risks such as light, relative humidity, temperature and pollution. Environmental monitoring requires a knowledge of the factors to be monitored and the ways in which monitoring can be carried out and recorded.

Practical collections care: a syllabus

Resource

This syllabus provides a framework for designing a practical course in the care of museum collections. It describes the activities which form the basis of curatorial knowledge and expertise in collections care and encourages a pragmatic approach. It can be used by anyone designing collections care courses for entry level learners.