Tinytag data loggers record temp/RH inside museum display cases containing sensitive objects to help manage their preservation and conservation.
Valence House Museum is the Local History Museum for the London
Borough of Barking and Dagenham. It tells the history of Barking
and Dagenham from pre-history through to the modern day. There are
13 galleries within the museum all of which have display cases that
are full of objects made from a variety of material.
A total of 15 Tinytag Plus 2 and
View 2 loggers
are located within cases containing objects that are most
susceptible to fluctuations in temp and RH. For example, these
include the archaeology case that displays unglazed ceramics and
two cases that both contain mid-to-late 16th century wall
paintings, all of which would be damaged by high levels of RH. They
are located in five cases that have a mixed media display that
includes textiles (man-made and natural fibres): the mixed media of
these cases makes monitoring the environment especially important
as fluctuation in RH levels could lead to changes in one object
causing damage in another.
A data logger is also located in a case containing the Dagenham
Idol, a 4000 year-old wooden figurine. Any fluctuation in RH could
lead to irreparable damage if the wood was to swell or contract.
Tinytags also monitor the environment in the mixed-media store and
cataloguing spaces where a stable environment is essential.
The recorded data is downloaded on a monthly basis and the RH
fluctuation over a 24 hour period is examined. Valence House is a
grade II* listed medieval manor house, and as such has no
environmental control. If the data shows any problems with the
levels, action is taken by controlling the temperature in display
spaces, or removing anything that may be causing the problem, such
as external lights.
The museum has been using Tinytags since 2006. Curator Leeanne
Westwood comments, "Tinytags proved easy to use, flexible and
suitable for our display spaces, so we have continued to use them.
They provide all the information I require to manage and care for
my collections appropriately."