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Thursday, May 16 • 3:30pm - 4:00pm
13. The Cantilever Test and Its Application in Libraries and Archives

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Brittleness in paper is one of the primary reasons library books are removed from circulation, digitized, or have their access limited. Monitoring the mechanical properties of paper-based materials has been a challenge for conservation scientists due to the complex nature of paper, which has fiber lengths much longer than sheet thicknesses. The main pathways of degradation, acid-catalyzed hydrolysis and oxidation, cause depolymerization of cellulose chains and breaking of intrafiber bonds. This results in a state in which paper can no longer maintain its structural integrity. This brittleness can vary across fiber types, paper making processes, age, and aging conditions of the paper. This work presents a reevaluation of the cantilever test as applied to naturally aged papers. In this non-destructive test, the deflection of a sample of paper held horizontally is measured across its length. The deflection data is then fit to non-linear bending theories assuming large deflection of a cantilever beam. This fit can be achieved using a simple polynomial approximation. From this, the bending modulus B and the bending length c can be easily calculated. This work also offers a comparison of the cantilever test to other conformations of bending tests, the hanging pear loop test and the clamped fold test, where samples are formed into loop shapes and their profiles are fit using polynomial approximations specific to each test. Finally, we introduce a book cradle that facilitates an in-situ, non-destructive cantilever test measurement. This cradle isolates the page being tested from the book without damaging the sewing structure or textblock and is adjustable to accommodate books of many sizes.

avatar for Andrea KI Hall

Andrea KI Hall

Student, Johns Hopkins University, Milton S. Eisenhower Library
Andrea Hall is Senior Research Specialist at Heritage Science for Conservation in the Department of Conservation and Preservation at Johns Hopkins University where she is working on physical property testing of heritage materials, environmental monitoring, studying conservation testing... Read More →

avatar for Alessandro Scola

Alessandro Scola

Conservator, Johns Hopkins University, Milton S. Eisenhower Library
avatar for Dr. Patricia McGuiggan

Dr. Patricia McGuiggan

Professor/Educator, Johns Hopkins University, Milton S. Eisenhower Library
Dr. McGuiggan obtained her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota.  During her Ph.D., she was a research scholar in the Applied Mathematics Department at the Australian National University working with Richard Pashley.  She spent 3 years as a postdoctoral... Read More →

Thursday May 16, 2019 3:30pm - 4:00pm EDT
Uncas Ballroom Foyer Sky Convention Center, Mohegan Sun