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Degradation of stone materials in the archaeological context of the Greek-Roman Theatre in Taormina (Sicily, Italy)

  • Authors: Brai, M; Casaletto, MP; Gennaro, G; Marrale, M; Schillaci, T; Tranchina, L
  • Publication year: 2010
  • Type: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
  • Key words: Brick wall; Decomposition process; Ex situ; In-situ; Salt efflorescence; Soluble salts; Structural characterization; Sulphates; X ray fluorescence
  • OA Link:


In the present work results on the degradation phenomena of stone materials in the Ancient Theatre of Taormina, one of the most important Greek–Roman monuments of Sicily, are reported. Artificial stone materials in different conservation conditions were investigated. Samples of salt efflorescences from brick walls and degraded setting mortars were taken from the open gallery in “summa cavea”. The chemical, physical and structural characterization was performed by means of X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF), both in situ and ex situ. Results showed that the deterioration of stone materials is due to the aggressive action of the environment agents. Soluble salts, such as chlorides, sulphates and nitrates, were found in efflorescence samples. Mortars were affected by a decomposition process induced by sulphates’ attack.