Strategies for the protection of shipwrecks in the.. (WreckProtect)
Strategies for the protection of shipwrecks in the Baltic Sea against forthcoming attack by wood degrading marine borers. A synthesis and information project based on the effects of climatic changes
Start date: May 1, 2009,
End date: Apr 30, 2011
Today the Baltic sea is a brackish marine environment, enclosing a unique well preserved historical collection of wooden shipwrecks and settlements. These objects and constructions are protected from aggressive marine borer due to the low salinity in the waters, and therefore it is one of the few localities in the world where historical shipwrecks are found so intact and available for historical research. There are however strong indications, showed by the EU- MOSS project, that the marine borer Teredo spp is spreading into this area. If we are not able to protect the cultural heritage, these objects will be lost within a relatively short time due to the aggressiveness of the marine borers. A strategy to handle this alarming scenario, is to provide the museums and conservators responsible for long term preservation of cultural heritage, with tools for predicting the spread of marine borers, and efficient methods for protection of the wreck, when the degradation is established. The WreckProtect project will therefore develop two guidelines synthesised on currently available information: 1. The prediction of marine borer attack in marine waters 2. The protection of wrecks in situ These guidelines will be applicable to other European marine waters outside the Baltic. The WreckProtect project is consequently a cross-disciplinary coordination action involving partners with expertise within geographical information systems, marine archaeology, marine biology, wood microbiology and conservation. These experts will through meetings and networking exchange knowledge and synthesise it into practical tools and methods in the form of guidelines that will be disseminated in a joint action for the European managers of underwater cultural heritage. A seminar, workshop and training course on practical in situ preservation of shipwreck will be organised during the project, and the guidelines will be published in international scientific journals and a monograph.
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