A build-up of matter which lies on, rather than being embedded in, a surface.
efflorescence; encrustation; fly specks; incrustation
Synonyms in English
deposit; incrust, encrust, incrustration, concretion
A growth or accumulation of new material on the exterior surface of an object. Accretions may be unintentional (dirt, salts, corrosion, insect deposits, guano, drips, burial deposits) or intentional (expansion, alteration) additions that change the appearance of the object.
Conservators may choose to leave accretions on an object for the additional details it may provide about an objects use, importance or history. In some instances conservators decide to leave accretions on a work for its pleasing color and appearance, or the additional protection to the underlying material from further damage.
METHODS OF REMOVAL
Laser cleaning is one of the newest technologies utilized in the removal of surface accretions and can be performed to burn or blast away any undesirable material. Infrared laser is often used when dealing with dark surface buildup on light colored stone or rocks such as marble or limestone, due to the materials reflective nature.
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