Integrated pest management (IPM)

Treatment targeting pest-infection, mould, insect infections and related methods of biological cleansing such as mechanical cleaning, freezing and a treatment combining warm air with controlled humidity to treat infection

This warm air humidity-regulated technique represents an extremely adequate method for treating a wide variety of materials.

By slowly increasing the temperature up to 52°c while controlling the relative humidity, insect infected objects can be treated. This method is 100% effective (it will exterminate both eggs, larvae as well as insects) and only requires a mere 24 hours in order to complete a treatment cycle. As such it is a valuable option for loans and quarantines. Moreover, the treatment is completely ecological and only requires (green) energy and water.

The treatment can be realized on location (there is a mobile treatment truck) and in the treatment chamber that is fitted out in IPARC, Kampenhout (Flemish-Brabant).

Thermal treatment

Effective and cost-efficient pest control is a challenge for fabric committees and local and regional authorities, as well as for administrators of private or public collections.

The ecological technique only uses natural elements (water and air), solid biological principles and laws of physics during the treatment that outperforms other methods in terms of speed and effectiveness. Besides, the treatment is non-invasive, non-toxic and 100% effective, and therefore also cost-efficient, while the work of art is the focus of attention and respected at all times.

The thermal treatment of moveable heritage is extremely suitable for objects in paper, fabric, carpets, leather, fur, ethnographic pieces but also furniture and musical instruments, polychromatic sculptures and paintings in the fight against woodworm (Anobium Punctatum), powder post beetle (Lyctus brunneus), death watch beetle (Xestobium rufovillosum), silverfish (Lepisma zaccharina), house longhorn beetle (Hylotropus bajulus), tobacco beetle, varied carpet beetle and bread beetle, common clothes moths, case-bearing clothes moths and carpet moths, but also fungi and wood fungus (dry rot).

The treatment process consists of heating up to 50-55° C, at which temperature organisms are 100% effectively eliminated, as soon as the core of the object is reached for a certain period of time and at a certain temperature. An average treatment cycle lasts 24 hours.

The principle behind the method is to make sure that the air humidity in objects is stable by maintaining the relative humidity at a restricted variation radius between 50 and 55% throughout the heating cycle, until reaching the temperature required to kill organisms, i.e. an average 52°C, and back. Computer-controlled monitoring and control of the relative humidity protects objects against damage. The temperature difference between the surface of an object and the core is also predefined and followed up during the treatment.

Lots of museums, galleries, auctioneers and institutions in the UK, Germany, Austria and Scandinavia have tested and accredited the method in the past two decades. Damage is not related to age so both old art and contemporary creations can benefit from the sustainable solution offered by this method.

IPARC offers these services in the Benelux and France both on location, using a mobile treatment chamber, or in the treatment chamber, fitted out at IPARC in Kampenhout (Belgium).