Environmental Survey at Former Soma Girls High School with Disaster-Affected Materials Stored

Dust removing & cleaning operations

 Under the Cultural Properties Rescue Operations in Fukushima Prefecture of the Committee for Salvaging Cultural Properties Affected by the 2011 Earthquake off the Pacific Coast of Tohoku and Related Disasters, cultural properties t evacuated from the museums located in the former restricted areas of Futaba, Okuma and Tomioka Towns were tentatively stored in the school buildings of the former Soma Girls High School (Soma City). Excluding large or particularly heavy objects, almost all objects have been transported and stored in the temporary storage of the Shirakawa Branch of the Fukushima Cultural Property Center to be utilized for exhibition after dust removal, cleaning and recording. Due to longer-than-expected tentative storage, conservation environments in Soma City were examined again on October 15, 2015. After collecting the installed data loggers for temperature, humidity and illuminance, we measured the surface temperatures of the walls in the classrooms and insulation board applied on the windows for shielding. We also checked visual inspection of the objects for any damage incurred by insects and mold. Desiccant dehumidifiers installed in the classrooms where objects were stored had prevented the rooms from becoming highly humid even in the seasons with high relative humidity such as the rainy season and summer, maintaining their humidity at 50-60% rh in general from late February to mid-August. This means that the materials were not in a mold-active condition. We also found that the intensity of illumination was somewhat high and the temperature of the space up to 1 m away from the window was easily affected by the external environment. For those objects for which mold was a real possibility, we conducted cleaning operations. We will continually consider how to maintain better environments at the tentative storage sites based on our collected basic data.

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