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Alexander Nimmo's Webpage

Photo of Alexander Nimmo Postgraduate Researcher

Phone: +44 (0)20 7679 7868
Email: alexander.nimmo.09@ucl.ac.uk
Address:
Department of Chemical Engineering
University College London
Torrington Place
London WC1E 7JE
United Kingdom

Alex Nimmo graduated from UCL in 2007 with a MSc in Computer Science and a BEng in Chemical Engineering. He then worked at a financial software company until coming back to UCL to do this PhD.

Research project

Title: Modelling a Book as a Chemical Reactor

Supervisors: Dr Luca Mazzei, Dr Matija Strlic (Centre for Sustainable Heritage) and Dr Paola Lettieri

This project is titled “Modelling the Role of Volatile Organic Compounds in the Degradation of Paper”. Our interest in books stems from their degradation and how this occurs. Much is still unknown as to the causes of their degradation, and in particular, how the book contributes to its own degradation.
With most information being provided digitally now, it would be understandable to think that the preservation of information in other mediums is not a big concern. However this is not the case. When looking at historical artefacts, these can be scanned into a digital format, but this will always be limited by the technology as to how much information can be scanned in. As the scanners improve, the more information they can take in, but without the original, there is no benefit to the improvement. 
Some causes of degradation are known, like external pollutants. In this research, we are looking at compounds that are produced during a book's degradation, and how they contribute to the process. These compounds are called VOCs - Volatile Organic Compounds. When looking at this from a Chemical Engineering perspective, we are looking to model the mass transfer locally of these VOCs with the intention of then linking this to the paper's degradation.

Page last modified on 04 oct 11 13:30