Environmental Earth Sciences

, Volume 69, Issue 4, pp 1471–1480

Non-destructive microtomography-based imaging and measuring laboratory-induced degradation of travertine, a random heterogeneous geomaterial used in urban heritage

  • António Maurício
  • Carlos Figueiredo
  • Carlos Alves
  • Manuel Pereira
Special Issue

DOI: 10.1007/s12665-013-2311-5

Cite this article as:
Maurício, A., Figueiredo, C., Alves, C. et al. Environ Earth Sci (2013) 69: 1471. doi:10.1007/s12665-013-2311-5

Abstract

The aim of this study is to apply X-ray microfocus computed microtomography (μ-XCT), a promising non-destructive 3D microscopy imaging technique, based on measurements of X-ray linear path attenuation coefficient, in order to study a Portuguese travertine, a random heterogeneous geomaterial used in urban heritage constructions. This study evaluates the impact of soluble sulphate salt–induced decay phenomena on texture characteristics at a micrometric scale. This is done to better describing, imaging, measuring and understanding the impact of an artificially induced sulphate-decay process on petrographic/petrophysical properties. A Portuguese travertine was chosen as the object of our study. Its laboratory-induced changes were systematically monitored, using non-destructive techniques, to determine voids (pores + fractures)/matrix fractions and size spectrum evolution based on 3-D images. This investigation demonstrates that the μ-XCT potential constitutes a valid complementary tool when analysing decay processes of complex natural materials in different environmental conditions. It clearly provides suggestive and important qualitative and/or quantitative estimates, at different spatial scales, of environmentally induced stone voids/matrix network spatial structure-texture evolution correlations. Further qualitative/quantitative parameterization assessment and statistical validation will be the next step to be taken on this study.

Keywords

X-ray microtomographyTravertineSulphate-induced stone decayGeomaterials/environment interactionsRandom heterogeneous materials

Abreviations

μ-XCT

X-ray microfocus computed microtomography

MIP

Mercury injection porosimetry

HRXCT

High resolution systems X-ray micro focus computed microtomography

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • António Maurício
    • 1
  • Carlos Figueiredo
    • 1
  • Carlos Alves
    • 2
  • Manuel Pereira
    • 1
  1. 1.Centro de Petrologia e Geoquímica (CEPGIST), Instituto Superior TécnicoUniversidade Técnica de LisboaLisbonPortugal
  2. 2.Centro de Investigação Geológica, Ordenamento e Valorização de RecursosUniversidade do Minho Portugal Campus de GualtarBragaPorugal