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Thermodynamic and Spectroscopic Speciation to Explain the Blackening Process of Hematite Formed by Atmospheric SO2 Impact: The Case of Marcus Lucretius House (Pompeii)

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posted on 2011-05-01, 00:00 authored by Maite Maguregui, Ulla Knuutinen, Irantzu Martínez-Arkarazo, Kepa Castro, Juan M. Madariaga
After many decades exposed to a polluted environment, in some areas of Marcus Lucretius House, there are clear signs that plasters and hematite pigments are suffering deterioration. In the exhaustive analysis of the black layer covering the red pigment hematite it was possible to identify magnetite (Fe3O4) as responsible for the black colour, which always appears in combination with gypsum. Thermodynamic modelling stated that the presence of gypsum as well as the transformation of hematite into magnetite is a consequence of the attack of atmospheric SO2.

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