The National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo was entrusted with conservation work of the great Buddha of Kamakura in Kotoku-in temple. In this work, for the first time in 55 years after the major conservation in 1959, the noble statue is enclosed by the scaffolding in order to perform recording the present condition, cleaning, metal analysis, climatic investigation, microtremor measurement, investigation of the seismic isolator, and high-resolution image photographing. With regard to the Great Buddha of Kamakura, the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo was also involved in gamma-rays transmission photographing that was implemented during the major conservation in 1950s, and the sampling analysis relating to copper corrosion as well as the environmental research that were implemented in 1995. In this work, it was scheduled that the surface rust was analyzed for the first time by means of the non-destructive analysis method such as XRF (X-Ray Fluorescence analysis) and XRD (X-Ray Diffraction analysis) and further detailed damage record was taken, based on which we expect to accurately know details of the current preservation state. The scheduled work also included checking of the condition of the sliding base isolator that was installed as earthquake countermeasures at the time of the major conservation in 1959.
Conservation of the Great Buddha of Kamakura, National Treasure