Having survived long centuries, political upheaval, and even bombings during World War II, Leonardo Da Vinci‘s masterpiece Last Supper now faces the risk of damage from air pollution due to its location in one of Western Europe’s most polluted cities. In late 2009, the refectory of Santa Maria Delle Grazie Church, where the painting is located, installed a sophisticated heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system to protect the painting from the polluted air of Milan.
To test the effectiveness of their pollution countermeasures, Italian officials called on Constantinos Sioutas, Fred Champion professor of civil and environmental engineering at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering. For his ongoing research, Sioutas has designed unobtrusive air samplers that are compact and quiet.
“These air pollution sampling technologies are ideally suited for use in sensitive facilities such as art galleries and museums. They do not disrupt the day-to-day operations of the facility,” Sioutas said.
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