Nascent oxygen innovation in art conservation: Cold atmospheric pressure plasma-generated monoatomic oxygen for non-contact cleaning of works of art

Tomas Markevicius, Ilaria Bonaduce, Anton Nikiforov, Nina Olsson, Gianluca Pastorelli, Agnieszka Suliga

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearchpeer-review


The climate crisis and unsustainable living increasingly threaten tangible cultural heritage around the world through the deposition of carbon-based contaminants from pollution, transport, fires, wildfires, and vandalism, among others. A multitude of porous materials, which constitute numerous works of art, cannot tolerate mechanical “wet” or “dry” cleaning and available means, which often include organic chemicals with known health and environmental impacts. The paucity of green materials makes it difficult to implement sustainability in conservation. The discussed innovation takes a radically different green approach to cleaning, based on a cold plasma-generated stream of atomic oxygen (AO) to remove contaminants with an incremental, non-contact and solvent-free process. The advancement of the AO concept, pioneered by B. Banks and S. Miller at NASA, is explored using AO and LEOX space environment simulator at the European Space Agency ESA. The novel atmospheric cold plasma-generated AO concept in the development by the authors is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date18 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 18 Sept 2023
Event20th ICOM-CC Triennial Conference - Valencia, Spain
Duration: 18 Sept 202322 Sept 2023


Conference20th ICOM-CC Triennial Conference
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