Approaches to the problem of limestone replacement in Greece
M. A. Stefanidou, 2010. "Approaches to the problem of limestone replacement in Greece", Limestone in the Built Environment: Present-Day Challenges for the Preservation of the Past, B. J. Smith, M. Gomez-Heras, H. A. Viles, J. Cassar
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One of the most common stone types in building construction in Greece is limestone. Whole structures such as castles, palaces, fortresses and churches were built only with limestone blocks or limestone pieces combined with other types of stone. In this paper two types of limestone (a biogenic limestone and a travertine) used in the construction of monuments are tested and analysed in terms of their physical, mechanical and microstructural characteristics in order to record their properties. Their exposure to different environmental conditions and the pathology forms they present are also recorded. The possibility of their replacement is approached either by supplementing the missing parts, by finding a comparable new stone or by applying an artificial one. The results of the study performed in each case are also presented.
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Limestone is a highly successful and widely used building material, found in many important historic buildings and new monuments around the world. Whilst its success reflects its durability under a wide range of environmental conditions, there are still important questions surrounding the selection, use and conservation of building limestones. In order to make best use of new limestone today, and to conserve old limestone most effectively, we need to bring modern research methods to bear on understanding the characteristics of different limestones, what mortars to use, and how key limestones have responded to polluted atmospheres. This volume brings together recent inter-disciplinary research on these issues, illustrating the diversity of innovative techniques that are now being applied to furthering our understanding of building limestones.