The Lab

lab1The laboratory is currently located in Milan, via Piranesi 10, at the headquarters of  “Open Care”, a company that offers solutions for the management of valuable heritage and historical artefacts. The lab is within the historic palace of “Frigoriferi Milanesi”, also famous because it was the site of the former ice rink, a liberty syle facility opened  in 1923.

The restoration lab is directed by Nello Paolucci, who after working in two large industrial companies dealing with scientific instruments,  has collaborated for ten years with the Institute of Physics –   Section History of Physics – University of Milan. In 1998, with a group of engineers, Nello has founded the ARASS association.

In the laboratory we are concerned to recover and restore antique scientific instruments of various types:

  • Astronomical instruments
  • Physics Tools
  • Geodetic Tools
  • Tools of Medicine
  • Weather Tools
  • Tools of Mineralogy
  • Water Tools
  • Watches
  • Optical Instruments
  • Seismic instruments
  • Terrestrial and celestial globes

The laboratory has an area of ​​160 square meters.

It is divided into different areas, air conditioned and lit by controlled artificial light, with air treatment and  filtering according to the needs of the various processes.

It ‘has a system for air and dust extraction, a warehouse for paint and flammable materials, with smoke detector, the forge area, equipped with fume hood, with its attached storage of materials.

It conforms the rules of hygiene and safety in the workplace.

It ‘a safe place, with alarmed doors and reinforced windows and a continuous security service throughout the 24 h.

lab2In the laboratory all the restoration phases are performed  according to the procedures described on the page RESTORATION CRITERIA. The first step is the archival research to explore the historical and cultural context of the period in which the instrument was built, the design principles, the construction techniques, the materials that were used.

For this research it is used a library prepared in the laboratory containing various books and catalogs on the ancient instrument.

The focus is to analyze the capabilities of the instrument and its parts , the terms of use in the past, any changes, additions, damage over the years. A full photographic documentation of the actual state of the piece is carefully recorded and documented.

Now the instrument can be disassembled and each individual piece is identified and cataloged. The next step is to check all mechanical movements.

At the end of the various processing phases, all items and tools are neatly stored in cupboards to be protected from dust and light.