Desalination by microstructured gel

Session AAP :

AAP 2022-2

Scientific responsibility :

  • Ann Bourgès
  • Emmanuel Keita
  • Ewen Lescop
  • Sarah Busschaert
  • Agnès Lattuati-Derieux
  • Violaine Jeammet
  • Marion Rapilliard

Partnership :

  • Musée départemental Arles Antique, Service restauration

Funding :


Project ID : IDF-DIM-PAMIR-2022-2-008

Summary :

The saline contamination of porous materials is one of the main factors of degradation of buildings exposed to the natural environment but also of many heritage objects. Many archaeological objects coming out of burial present a fragile surface, even soluble in an aqueous medium, making it impossible to desalinate them by bath or poultices. The DEGEL project proposes to explore the alternative solution of desalination by gel. The aim is to develop a new application and formulation based on agar-agar or xanthan gum bio-polymers by optimizing their microstructure for desalination purposes. This new process will allow to capture soluble salts by bringing a controlled quantity of water on the surface of the object, thus respecting the most delicate surfaces. Safe for the user, these gels are part of an eco-responsible approach. For this research, interdisciplinarity is essential, through a permanent dialogue between scientists, restorers and conservators. DEGEL responds to a restoration emergency by unraveling the mechanisms linking porosity, rheology and transfer properties.


Post-doctoral student : Julie Tourtelot