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Disinfection and Disinfestation

Mold infections and insect infestations in archives, libraries and museum deposits

The presence of molds, fungal spores, insects and other biodeteriogenic agents is one of the most serious problems faced by libraries, archives, museum deposits.

These agents are in fact capable of causing considerable damage to the paper material, threatening its integrity and correct conservation.

Statistically, most of the bodies responsible for the protection of archival and book heritage must face the problem of molds and, secondly, the problem of insect infestations during their existence. However, cases of combined attacks are not rare. Several insects in fact derive nourishment from the molds themselves, as well as from the paper.

The conservation environment, the accidents and the contaminations that favor the appearance of molds and insects on the paper material

Infections with mold and fungal spores and insect infestations often originate and / or are often fueled by unsuitable storage environments – for example, humid and / or dusty environments.

Respecting the cleanliness and optimal microclimatic conditions of the storage environments – temperature and relative humidity – is therefore a basic condition to avoid running into these problems.

In any case, both infections and infestations can also occur as a result of catastrophic events, accidents and contaminations of various kinds.

In case of flooding due to natural disasters – floods, floods, etc. – and artificial – broken pipes, systems, fire extinguishing, etc. -, the contact of the paper material with water creates the conditions for a rapid and harmful fungal proliferation.

For this it is essential to intervene immediately on the wet material, proceeding to its transfer and massive freezing in special freezer containers. This practice makes it possible to prevent the development, growth and proliferation of fungal spores, making the recovery of the damaged material less onerous. However, it requires compliance with appropriate timing which can be negatively influenced not only by the characteristics and outcomes of the disaster or accident, but also by organizational, logistical, bureaucratic and budget factors.

The Cryo-safety system for the instant arrest of fungal proliferation in case of disasters

The CryoSafetySystem is a proprietary innovation that distinguishes the success of Fratielivi’s interventions in the event of disaster recovery for paper materials damaged by water and at risk of infections and infestations.

This exclusive parameterized and modular pre-freezing system allows the company’s rescue team to intervene throughout the Italian territory and to place large quantities of books and archival documentation in complete safety, blocking the deterioration of the materials entered in the bud. contact with water.

Thanks to the CrioSafetySystem, the wet material is in fact immediately placed in the functional temperature conditions to stop fungal proliferation, well before its necessary transfer to the freezer containers.

In this way, the timelines required by a truly effective intervention are always fully respected; the constraints deriving from organizational, logistical or budgetary obstacles to movement become much less stringent and onerous; the costs of the intervention and recovery are lower.

Books Wind1, Books Wind2, Docursan1, Docursan3 and Docursan4 for the disinfection and disinfestation of archival and book heritage

To solve the problem of infections and infestations that affect or can affect archival and book heritage in emergency situations, Fratielivi has designed and developed special systems and machinery – Books Wind1, Books Wind2, Docursan1, Docursan3, Docursan4 – which guarantee targeted solutions, effective, certified.

Thanks to this unique fleet of machines and plants in Italy and its skilled workforce, the company is always able to:

  • intervene on paper and membranous supports subject to protection (books, folders, loose papers, documents, parchments, etc.) infected or infested or at risk – especially if damp or wet – of developing mold and bacteria;
  • sanitize and disinfect large quantities of material, as in the case of accidents, in a short period of time;
  • ensure the adoption of the most suitable solution for the state of conservation and fragility of the material to be treated;
  • certify the nature and success of its interventions.

In the event that i archival and library assets result at risk of fungal germination and bacterial proliferation because damaged by water and humidity, Fratielivi, in addition to guaranteeing its pre-freezing with the Crio-safety System, is able to offer handling, transport, displacement and storage in its own freezer containers.

The frozen material is subsequently sent to thedrying, which – depending on the extent, state of conservation, fragility and damage found through appropriate microbiological analyzes – Fratielivi carries out both Books Wind1 – the only freeze drying plant certified in Italy to date – and, in more specific cases, with Books Wind2 e Docursan3, which operate through hydrocondensation-drying.

Over the years, Fratielivi has developed a series of proprietary solutions for the sanitization and disinfection, even massive, of the archival and book heritage. The latter are based on plants and machinery which, through forces of a physical nature – as in the case of Books Wind2 – and physicochemical – as in the case of Docursan1 -, successfully neutralize and counteract a wide variety of biodeteriogens.

Introduced in 2021, Docursan1 it allows, in particular, to sanitize – even in archives, libraries, museums and institutions that hold documents subject to protection that are difficult to handle – archival and book assets and to eliminate molds, fungi, gram positive and negative bacteria and viruses ( including Covid 19), in total safety for the operators, the material and its potential users and with a certified effectiveness of over 99%.

With Docursan1 books, folders, loose papers, parchments, etc. they are disinfected not only topically but also in depth – that is to say at the “heart” volume “.

The machine operates through the combined and harmonized action of forces of a physical and chemical nature. In fact, Docursan1 uses a disinfectant agent with a biocidal action, the use and composition of which are in perfect compliance with the regulations, guidelines and recommendations of the bodies and institutions – national and international – responsible for safeguarding the archival and book heritage.

Finally, Cryo-disinfestation is the solution chosen and proposed by Fratielivi to save infested archival and library assets without any use of chemical substances harmful to the health of operators – such as ethylene oxide – or potentially harmful to integrity. of goods.

In this regard, the company has developed its own automated disinfestation technologybased on controlled and parameterized cold – which has been subjected to empirical tests by a prestigious Italian university research center.

This technology, which equips the Books Wind2 systems and the Docursan1, Docursan3 and Docursan4 machinery, is able to eliminate the insects present on paper, membranous and wooden finds at every stage of their life cycle with 100% effectiveness.

The disinfection and pest control interventions of Fratielivi, in perfect compliance with the legislation, are always carried out and directed by qualified restorers and subjected to the final validation of the performance through certified microbiological analyzes.

On the other hand, the procedures and processes adopted guarantee both the correct conservation of documents and the health of the operators and users of the sanitized and disinfested material.

Fratielivi’s global approach to disinfection and pest control

Correctly sanitizing archival and library material requires a global approach, i.e. the implementation of processes, procedures and products in the phase before and after disinfection and disinfestation.

To ascertain the existence, nature and extent of the problems of mold infections and insect infestations, Fratielivi is able to preliminarily offer accurate certified microbiological analyzes.

The ex ante dedusting and possibly ex post disinfection and disinfestation can also be carried out on site or at the customers’ premises, with the latest generation suction benches and with the new range of DEA machines.

The company production of certified paper converting and containers for long conservation also allows Fratielivi to offer the reconditioning service of sanitized and disinfested material.

The support and services of Fratielivi for the prevention of mold and insect attacks

Finally, prevention plays an important role in combating the development of mold and insects in archives, libraries and museum deposits.

For this reason, Fratielivi is able to ensure its customers both microbiological and entomological monitoring, and the optimal microclimatic conditions of conservation through the supply of data loggers and dehumidifiers.

Environmental remediation and sanitation which, when necessary, is a prerequisite for the relocation of the collections, complete the rich range of prevention services offered by the company.


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