Dr Christine Davidson and Dr Cristina Gonzalez-Longo from the University of Strathclyde are seeking letters of support from the UK analytical chemistry community for a EPSRC Strategic Equipment Bid to Establish a £1.2M Architectural Design and Conservation Research Unit Laboratory, to carry out pioneering research on the conservation and sustainable reuse of UK buildings.

The proposal is a multi-disciplinary collaboration between architects, engineers and analytical scientists that seeks to establish a state-of-the art facility dedicated to the chemical and physical characterisation of building materials e.g. stone, timber, metal, glass etc. Research outcomes will provide new insight into degradation processes and aid in the development of fit-for-purpose restoration options.

The laboratory will feature a range of instrumentation: triple quadrupole ICP-MS with both laser ablation and solution sample introduction; hyperspectral imagining apparatus, portable X-ray fluorescence spectrometry etc. It will also interface with established analytical capability at Strathclyde, from (hand-held) FTIR, to X-ray computed tomography.

The proposal has successfully passed the Expression of Interest stage and we are working towards a submission deadline of 25th March 2021. We are particularly keen to receive letters of support from:

(a) organisations with expertise to comment on the need to establish a dedicated facility for building materials analysis at the interface between analytical science and architecture, and

(b) potential users of the facility.

Further information can be obtained from:

Dr Christine Davidson (CI, Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry)    c.m.davidson@strath.ac.uk

Dr Cristina Gonzalez-Longo (PI, Department of Architecture)                 c.gonzalez-longo@strath.ac.uk

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