The conservation of a wooden nabataean coffin box from jordan – application of non-destructive ultrasonic technique

In this study, a wooden Nabataean coffin box from Jordan was examined and investigated for its conservation. The previously neglected coffin box was subject to various problems such as fragility, structural disintegration, and biological degradation. Microscopic examination using transmitted light microscope and scanning electron microscope showed the coffin box to be constructed of Lebanon cedar wood. Microbiological investigations allowed the isolation and identification of the fungal and bacterial species that have contributed to the biological degradation of the object. Non-destructive ultrasonic velocity measurements were carried out on the coffin wood to evaluate its deterioration level and to assess the effectiveness of consolidation treatments. Based on these analyses, several conservation processes were carried out on the object. These include cleaning, sterilization, consolidation, and reconstruction. For the consolidation of the coffin box, four different consolidation products were tested. Using ultrasonic technique, Paraloid B72 proved to be the most effective consolidation material for application on the coffin.