The “Porta Férrea” (Iron Gate) is the main access to the “Paço das Escolas” (University Palace) at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. It has undergone several adaptations and reconstructions from an original castle gate until the present portal that was built in 1634. The inscription of “University of Coimbra, Alta and Sofia” in the UNESCO Word Heritage list increased the interest in developing conservation works and to do the characterization of the limestone materials of the “Porta Férrea” portal. To support the conservation works, a research project was developed. The intervention plan, the sampling and testing performed and the conservation developed are presented. The rock material in the portal is the Ançã limestone, showing very high porosity around 30%, creating quite important degradation and conservation problems. The deterioration pattern, analyses performed, and the conservative works are presented. In this study it can be confirmed that Ançã limestone of “Porta Férrea” do not decay according a theoretical predictable pattern in response to polluted environments, as the defined for Portland limestone, assuming erosion rates and forms controlled by a range of micro-environment conditions particularly related with architectural constraints.
Environmental Earth Sciences – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 5, 2018
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