Ahrc Dtp/english Heritage Cda Collaborative PhD in Conservation Conservation of Late 19th and 20th Century Artillery Pieces

Cardiff University is pleased to invite applicants to apply for a PhD position in material sciences. Applications are welcome before October 14, 2019.

This project will take a cross-disciplinary integrated approach combining three key areas, namely historical study, material science and conservation management, to provide robust evidence and recommendations for designing collections care.

English Heritage (EH) cares for over 400 cannons, carriages and guns from many eras, across 29 historic sites including Dover Castle, Pendennis, and Tilbury Fort. Their function means artillery are often situated in exposed sites that include coastal peninsulas and ports, subjecting them to a range of environmental conditions that include exposure to airborne salts and pollution, which accelerates corrosion and increases the need for remedial conservation.

The complexity of more modern artillery designs involves a wider range of materials and components that act as water traps, which increases their vulnerability to corrosion. Developing evidence based long term collections care strategies is imperative to protect these heritage assets and to prioritise their conservation.

What is the most effective management strategy for modern artillery in the English Heritage collection?

Establishing historic context and site specificity of late 19th and 20th Century artillery within the EH collection will connect locations and collections to provide a unique perspective on England's history. EH has already been conducting work on the history and significance of each gun and their site specificity which will inform prioritisation of treatment. The student will examine this to develop an understanding of relationships between location and historic use of specific artillery, allowing them to correlate condition and site.

Scientific investigation of the artillery pieces will assess the composition and condition of components, identifying those parts that show the greatest signs of corrosion and linking these to the initial research into provenance. Literature review and in-situ analysis using portable spectroscopy will determine alloy composition, which will be related to artillery production and corrosion processes occurring.

The project will then focus on understanding the effectiveness of conservation treatments for artillery within their appropriate contexts, concentrating on assessing performance of current coating systems and investigating novel alternatives such as fluoropolymers. The duration of this project offers the opportunity to couple artificial ageing with real-time degradation studies onsite.

As a collaborative award, students will be expected to spend time at both the University and English Heritage properties and offices.

The project will also be supervised by Paul Lankester (Conservation Scientist, English Heritage) and Ian Leins (Curator, English Heritage).

For further information you may also contact Paul Lankester (Paul.Lankester@english-heritage.org.uk).

Deadline: October 14, 2019
Apply Link:http://tinyurl.com/y2k9axm6

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