Laboratory for nanostructured materials for cultural heritage

Nanomaterials can be used for treating stone monuments or other cultural heritage materials.

Nano-additives can be suitable for:

  • Surface consolidation, occurring thanks to a material that penetrating by capillarity into the micro-structure of the decayed stone, is able to strengthen it by replacing lost original mineral bridges, and partially recovering lost mechanical properties.
  • Surface protection, occurring thanks to a material that penetrating by capillarity into the micro-structure of the stone, is able to prevent the ingress of liquid water, without any change in aesthetical, optical and chemical properties of the substrate.

The synthesis and the control of nanoparticles, as well as their chemical modification, allows to prepare versatile water based suspensions having a consolidating, anti-microbial or protective activity, very useful for cultural heritage materials.

Research group
Prof. Ing. Andrea Lazzeri, Prof. Maria-Beatrice Coltelli, Dott. Luca Panariello, Dott. Ing. Laura Aliotta, Dott. Ing. Vito Gigante, Dott. Ing. Roberto D’Ambrosio

External collaborations:
Prof. Lucia Toniolo, Politecnico di Milano
Prof. Valter Castelvetro, DCCI-UNIPI
Prof. Simona Raneri, DST-UNIPI
Prof. Johannes Weber, IATCS, Vienna
Dr Elisabeth Masha, IATCS, Vienna
Dr Matea Ban, TUWIEN, Vienna
Luciana Festa, ISCR, Roma


NANO-CATHEDRAL (H2020-646178) Nanomaterials for conservation of European architectural heritage developed by research on characteristic lithotypes.

Ended on 2018

Main publications:

  • Coltelli MB, Lazzeri A, An Extensive Research about Nano-Treatments for the Restoration and Conservation of Stone Monuments in Europe Considering Representative Lithotypes, Nanotechnol Adv Mater Sci, Volume 2(1): 1–5, 2019
  • Coltelli MB, Paolucci D, Castelvetro V, Bianchi S, Mascha E, Panariello L, Pesce C, Weber J, Lazzeri A (2018) Preparation of Water Suspensions of Nanocalcite for Cultural Heritage ApplicationsNanomaterials 254.
  • Lazzeri A. et al. (2018) European Project Nano-Cathedral: Nanomaterials for Conservation of European Architectural Heritage: Pisa, the Experience of a Mediterranean Cathedral. In: Koui M., Zezza F., Kouis D. (eds) 10th International Symposium on the Conservation of Monuments in the Mediterranean Basin. MONUBASIN 2017. Springer, Cham