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Bo Kasal

Adjunct Professor

Biltmore Hall (Robertson Wing) NA


Date: 08/15/05 - 7/31/06
Amount: $0.00
Funding Agencies: National Science Foundation (NSF)

Project Summary Numerous advances in in-situ evaluation have been made during the past decade that have potential application to historic buildings. An international workshop to determine the state-of-the-art and research needs for in-situ evaluation of historic structures is proposed. Historic structures represent cultural heritage. The ability to assess and diagnose their condition is paramount to their long-term survival. Threats from adverse environments and lack of maintenance exist around the world. Many of these objects are invaluable to our cultural heritage but are being lost to the detriment of future generations. A coordinated effort is required to preserve these structures. That effort must begin with an understanding of the technology needed to provide accurate data to document the condition and repair needs. INTELLECTUAL MERIT. This proposal focuses on the technical aspects of historic preservation of buildings. Historic preservation depends on accurate and objective assessment of structural characteristics of materials. European countries have long-term experience in restoration and rehabilitation of buildings. In the US, this field has been largely ignored by the engineering profession but is gaining significance as our infrastructure and inner-cities building stock are aging. Much is to be learned from the experience of other countries. The advances in nondestructive testing permit the use of state-of-the art techniques in the documentation and assessment of existing structures. Significant experience exists within the US with the use of nondestructive technologies in various applications, such as aviation inspection, structural testing, medical and defense industries. Several of these applications show potential for use in historic preservation. BROADER IMPACT STATEMENT. The workshop will bring together scientists and practitioners from the United States and Europe to permit an exchange of knowledge, ideas leading to the development of an international research agenda geared towards assessment of historic buildings with broader impact being in preservation of cultural heritage around the world using state-of-the-art techniques and preservation knowledge. Graduate and undergraduate students will be actively participating in the workshop that will include a field demonstration of various techniques as well as theoretical principles. The students will use and demonstrate the equipment and will participate in the discussions. This will give them a unique experience in observing how international research agenda is developed. We expect the following specific results: (1) key needs for technology will be identified and an agenda for international research collaboration will be developed, (2) key alliances in developing international research proposals to address the issues of ageing infrastructure will be created, (3) the stage for developing an international graduate program in historic preservation of structures focused on technical aspects will be set.

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