A New Method for Drying Wet Books Using Super Absorbent Polymers as Desiccant

Award Information
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2004-33610-14356
Agency Tracking Number: 2004-00479
Amount: $75,875.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2004
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
Artifex Equipment, Inc.
P.O. Box 319, Penngrove, CA, 94951
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Nicholas Yeager
 (707) 664-1672
 artifex@pipeline.com
Business Contact
 Nicholas Yeager
Title: President
Phone: (707) 664-1672
Email: artifex@pipeline.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Water damage to library materials is an inherent problem for collections of books and documents. Wet books take many days to air dry. Commercial food freeze-drying has been used to remove moisture from wet books and has been instrumental in handling thousands of wet items as a result of floods and plumbing leaks. This method can cause collateral damage; material has to be moved off-site and can take up to six months for processing. Paper is hydroscopic; a bound book can absorb 60% to 200% of its original weight in water. The major damage to bound books is caused by swelling and can force the text block to become detached from its binding. Wet books are subject to mechanical, chemical, and cosmetic damage within hours of becoming damp. Develop a commercially viable method for drying wet books using an organic polymer. Current technology is primarily high-tech, equipment-intensive and fails to address a number of needs within the disaster recovery field. Benefits include: Low-tech method that can be used by a variety of practitioners to get positive results. Speed recovery time to minutes instead of days per book. Delivery system(s) that are portable allowing workers to perform onsite recovery. Potential for cleaner books with little or no residual damage or staining. Low cost per book. Utility for single items or mass treatment with equal benefit.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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