Schädigung von Kulturgut durch Salze

(Damage to Cultural Heritage from Salt)

by Dr. Hans-Jürgen Schwarz

next course: 4 April - 29 May 2022
fee: 169,- € (students get a reduction of 20%)

Damage caused by salts belong to the most frequent and strongest damage processes with which restorers and conservators are faced with on monuments of stone and brick, plasters and mural paintings. Identifying and investigating the damage patterns and their causes are therefore an important step toward long-term preservation of these objects.

In this e-learning course after the presenting of the chemical and mineralogical principles of salts and salt crystallization mechanisms of damage formation, the origin of the salt-forming ions and transport processes are explained. The individual salts will be presented, important common salts with a high damaging potential are explained more detailed. You also get to know the standard methods of salt and moisture analysis, temperature and humidity measurement and methods for treatment of damage by  salt and moisture.

The course includes:

  • Scientific Principles
  • Harmful salts
  • Damage mechanisms / Damage Pictures
  • Measures to salt damage
  • Measurement of air and moisture
  • Analytical methods

The textual explanations are supplemented by references, web links and about 150 figures as well as 10 short videos. In addition to contact the tutor by telephone there is the possibility to exchange with the author via email, forum or video chat to clarify questions, go through case studies and present measurement and analytical methods.

The course is primarily intended to understand the damage processes, to see the relationship between salt, humidity and air as well as to assess the individual methods. It provides the background knowledge to take the right analytical procedures and adapted measures.
The mineralogist Dr. Hans-Jürgen Schwarz, a renown expert in the field of salt problems, has been lecturing on the subject of "Damage from Salt" in the Faculty of Architecture, Engineering and Conservation at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Hildesheim/Holzminden/Göttingen for many years and coordinates the Hornemann Institute's project Creation of an Online Information Structure Using a Specialist Wiki (incl. Repository) on the Subject “Salt-based Damage” in the Research Field of “Conservation of Cultural Heritage” funded by the "Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft".

The course is in German language, but technical support can be given in English. For further information and registration please have a look at the German version.

If you are interested please email: