Maintenance of the Ishtar Temple

Post by Mohamed.

Editor’s note: One of our Conservation students sent back pictures of work going on at Babylon.

The Ishtar Temple at Babylon.

The Ishtar Temple at Babylon.

Large crack in the wall of the Ishtar Temple.

Large crack in the wall of the Ishtar Temple.

Supporting the exterior wall from the right side of the temple with big shoring and scaffoldings to prevent the wall from falling down.  Also putting an indicator to monitor the crack monthly.

Shoring to stabilize the crack in the Ishtar Temple.

Shoring to stabilize the crack in the Ishtar Temple.

Another view of the shoring.

Another view of the shoring.

Posted in Advanced Students, Archaeology, Conservation, University of Delaware | Leave a comment

Learning how to stabilize and lift objects from the field.

Post by Dlshad.

IMG_0464

Exposing the object by using a brush to avoid causing any damage to the object.

Exposing the object by using a brush to avoid causing any damage to the object.

During the process of excavation - a scale and label have been included in documentation photographs.

During the process of excavation – a scale and label have been included in documentation photographs.

After exposing a big part of the object, some cracks appeared on the surface of the object.  So it had to be consolidated to be removed safely.

Wrapping with a bandage is one consolidation method.

Wrapping with a bandage is one consolidation method.

Showing the process of wrapping.

Showing the process of wrapping.

In the lab, removing the soil that was inside the pot carefully to discover if there are other materials inside.

In the lab, removing the soil that was inside the pot carefully to discover if there are other materials inside.

Posted in Archaeology, Conservation, Introductory Students, University of Delaware | Leave a comment

Excavating fragile artifacts.

Post by Raoaa.

صور  لمتدربين  لدورة  المبتدئين  في  المهعد العراقي لصيانة الأثار والتراث , يناقشون  في  حقل  تدريبي  (معد مسبقا ) كيفية  رفع  مجموعة  نماذج  مقلدة  لقطع  مدفونة  في  مربع  دفن واحد , يتناقشون في  أعداد خطة  لأدارة عملية  رفع هذه  القطع  وتقرير  الطرق  الأأمن  والأمثل  والأدق  لعملية  الرفع  بأدق  الطرق  للحفاظ على القطعة  اثناء وخلال  التنقيب  وحتى  خلال  نقلها الى  المتحف  أو المختبر .

Documenting a fragile basket before lifting.

Documenting a fragile basket before lifting.

Discussing how to lift a fragile artifact.

Discussing how to lift a fragile artifact.

Lifting a fragile necklace.

Lifting a fragile necklace.

Practicing excavation techniques for fragile artifacts.

Practicing excavation techniques for fragile artifacts.

Posted in Archaeology, Conservation, Introductory Students, University of Delaware | Leave a comment

My Metal Object Treatment

Post by Ahmed.

Object before treatment.

Object before treatment.

A copper dish coated with tin had dirt and residues of food on the surface.

Mechanical cleaning under the microscope.

Mechanical cleaning under the microscope.

I used mechanical cleaning to remove the dust from the surface under the microscope.   After that I used calcium carbonate and water on cotton swabs for cleaning.

Mechanical cleaning.

Mechanical cleaning.

DSC07691

Posted in Advanced Students, Conservation, University of Delaware | Leave a comment

Testing for salts in pottery.

Post by Barnadet.

This pottery jar with a spherical shape has a circular base and brown stripes on the body (registration number IM222239 – Iraqi Museum).  I worked on testing for soluble salt by using distilled water after taking a sample from the jar.  I put on the sample a drop of nitric acid, then a drop of silver nitrate.  The result was positive so the jar contains chloride salt.

Dropping silver nitrate on the sample to test for chlorides.

Dropping silver nitrate on the sample to test for chlorides.

Posted in Advanced Students, Archaeology, Conservation, University of Delaware | Leave a comment

Examining and Storing a New Textile

Post by Ali.

When a new textile comes into the museum, it needs to be examined before storing it.  For that we need to follow these steps:

  1. The textile is placed on a table and examined thoroughly in search of anything that might damage it.
  2. Remove any material on the piece like unconnected threads, dirt and dust.
  3. If there are insect holes in the textile or insects or eggs, we put the textile through a freezing or heating procedure to kill live insects.
  4. At the Institute, the textile is kept in the freezer for two weeks then checked again for insects.
  5. After the elimination of insects, the textile is ready to be stored.
Preparing a textile for the freezer.  Freezing kills live insects.

Preparing a textile for the freezer. Freezing kills live insects.

Posted in Conservation, Introductory Students, Museum Studies, University of Delaware | Leave a comment

Test strips

Post by Nyan

Choosing a spot to test on an ancient pottery artifact.

Choosing a spot to test on an ancient pottery artifact.

Test for nitrates (NO3)  soluble salt

Equipment

  • Nitrate test paper
  • Distilled water
  • Dropper

I put two drops of distilled water on the jar and then put the test strip (nitrate test paper) on the jar and held it there for about a minute.  The color changing means that there are nitrates in the jar.

The test strip shows a postive result.

The test strip shows a negative result.

Posted in Advanced Students, Archaeology, Conservation, University of Delaware | Leave a comment