Deterioration of the black Drenov Grič limestone on historical monuments (Ljubljana, Slovenia)
The black limestone from Drenov Grič quarry (Central Slovenia) is considered one of the most beautiful Slovenian natural stones due to its typical color. The limestone was characterized from mineralogical, chemical, and petrophysical points of view. Furthermore, deterioration phenomena of the limestone from two monuments exposed to indoor and outdoor environments were studied. In situ investigation of two monuments by means of monument mapping has identified several types of deterioration phenomena, such as granular disintegration, flaking, crumbling, efflorescences, crusts, and the presence of microorganisms. Samples were characterized using Optical Microscopy (OM), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) coupled with Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS), X-Ray Powder Diffraction Analysis (XRD), porosity accessible to water under vacuum, capillary absorption, Mercury porosimetry (MIP), and Ar-sorption. Although very low values of porosity of the fresh stone as well as slow capillary kinetics were determined, both monuments showed severe deterioration as a consequence of the transport and precipitation of soluble salts within the stone.
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