Academic thesis

Christina Duhme: Artificial, naturally! Imitation of tortoise shell and ivory - possibilities of substituting with plastics, demonstrated on historic commodities with an aspect on the identification of materials. Back
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Abstract: Natural or artificial - a restorer of furniture or craftwork dealing with special objects could be concerned with this question. This diploma-thesis exposes the difference between the natural materials tortoise shell and ivory compared to those of plastics. Furthermore, analyses are discussed, which should ease the identification of different kinds of plastics imitating tortoise shell and ivory. One focus is the possibility of fluorescence-analyses.
The diploma thesis deals with the question, which reasons there are for replacing the precious natural materials - concerning restoration, this can be the ethical objection of using materials of endangered species.
The plastics being used as substitutes are documented in detail. In this context the social and historical circumstances are shown, which influenced the development of plastics. Ageing properties in addition are described: These ageing properties lead to a special treatment of plastics, summarized in one chapter of the thesis. Moreover, those properties of degradation may indicate if an artificial material could be used in restoration.
Which demands are made to a material used in restoration are discussed. An appendix with samples shows materials used for imitation.


Keywords: tortose shell, ivory, imitation, plastics
  • academic institution: HAWK Hochschule für angewandte Wissenschaft und Kunst Hildesheim/ Holzminden/Göttingen
  • kind of theses:  Diplomarbeit
  • main Tutor:  Prof. Dr. Henrik Schulz
  • assistant Tutor:  Dipl.-Chem. Wolfhardt Schmidt
  • date:  2008
  • Language:  German
  • pages:  136
  • pictures:  72
Christina Duhme
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