Microclimatology applied to cultural heritage

A.Y. 2021/2022
Overall hours
Learning objectives
To introduce physical quantities and processes which control the state and the dynamical evolution of the atmosphere surrounding objects of historical, artistic, cultural interest. The focus will be (1) on the effects of the variability of temperature, humidity, radiation, air pollution on cultural heritage and (2) on the monitoring techniques of micro-meteorology.
Expected learning outcomes
Ability to read technical and scientific texts about measuring instruments, monitoring procedures, data analysis, physical processes related to the interaction of cultural heritage with surrounding atmosphere.
Ability to recognize the effects of microclimate and air quality on the cultural heritage.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
Second year
If required, on the basis of the restrictions introduced to limit the COVID-19 pandemic spread, the Lectures will be given in synchronous telematic method, with the MS Teams platform and will be recorded so that the video will be available through the Moodle site of the course unit accessible at https://labonline.ctu.unimi.it.
The final practical activity will be substituted by the analysis of the national norm UNI 10829 and by the preparation of a report about the design of its realization in a specific site or guide-lines for its realization in a given context (e.g., exhibition room, interior of a church or of a cathedral, etc.).

The syllabus and the study material will not be subject to any variation.

The examination tests will be held in telematic way, through the MS Teams platform, which can be accessed by following the instructions available on the web portal of the University.
Course syllabus
1) Microclimate, air, temperature, humidity (basic thermodynamics applied to the study of closed spaces and to conservation practice). Methods of measurement and monitoring of temperature and humidity.
2) Description of air masses and of vertical motions (equivalent, potential and virtual temperature, adiabatic gradient, atmosphere stability). Methods of measurement and monitoring of wind and air circulation indoor.
3) Radiation. Natural and artificial illumination. Methods of measurement and monitoring of radiation.
4) Physics of condensation and rainfall. Methods of measurements of rainfall.
5) Dispersion of pollutants and atmospheric instability. Dry and wet deposition.
6) Basic acoustics.
Prerequisites for admission
Basic knowledge of physics.
Teaching methods
Traditional lectures. Fast quizzes (multiple-choice questions) will be proposed during lectures, whereas autonomous activities will be proposed as homework between successive lectures; these activities will be performed with telematic synchronous and/or asynchronous instruments.
Final lectures will be aimed to visit a museum or a building of architectonic or historical interest, to assess the microclimatic conditions. The students will write a report about this activity .
Teaching Resources
Dario Camuffo
Microclimate for Cultural Heritage 3rd Edition
Measurement, Risk Assessment, Conservation, Restoration, and Maintenance of Indoor and Outdoor Monuments
Elsevier Science, 2019
Assessment methods and Criteria
Written test with four multiple-chioice questions and two open-ended questions, followed by an oral exam.
Students, who participate to the practical activity and submit the relative report, will not answer the second open-ended question.

For the oral exam and open-ended questions, the assessment criteria are the ability to organize the presentation of knowledge and the mastery of the results illustrated in the report and of the topics taught during the lectures.
For the written report the assessment criteria are the ability to describe in a clear and rigorous way the results, the skill in the use of the specialistic lexicon and the ability to apply what has been taught during the lectures.

The final evaluation is expressed with a mark in thirtieth and accounts for the assessment of the written and oral exams; the assessment of the results of quizzes and homework can give an incremental, additional bonus for the final mark.
Lessons: 48 hours
Professor: Giudici Mauro
By phone or mail appointment
via Cicognara 7