The University of Southampton’s engineering consultancy, nC², is helping the National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) to find the best materials to use to conserve Admiral Nelson’s 18th-century flagship, HMS Victory, for the next half century.
Specially designed tests will assess a range of paints, caulking, glues, and metal fastenings.
‘Rainwater is probably our biggest enemy in terms of the ship’s preservation,’ said NMRN Head of Conservation, Diana Davis. ‘We want to know as much as possible about the materials we are using – taking an evidence-based approach to choose the right products. nC² is helping us to do that, and even if there’s no perfect product that will last the full 50 years, their data will enable us to plan our maintenance schedule to keep the ship watertight.’