Theses (Historic Preservation)

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



This thesis develops and preliminarily tests a biophilic adhesive filler for the fossilized tree stumps at Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument (FLFO), which are rapidly deteriorating due to the impacts of precipitation and freeze-thaw cycling. At the crown of Stump P47, lichens have been observed to have a consolidating effect, preventing further fragmentation. Recent conservation research confirms that in certain environments, with specific substrates and organisms, microflora and macroflora can act as protective and consolidating agents for stone substrates. This thesis explores these benefits by considering potential materials for the formulation of a biophilic adhesive filler, which could be used as a protective surface treatment on the FLFO stumps. The adhesive filler for open cracks and fissures could offer temporary protection, consolidation, waterproofing, and a bioreceptive and nutrient-rich surface on which lichens may continue to flourish. In order to develop the surface treatment, optimal performance characteristics were established. Materials were researched and selected based on their adherence to these characteristics, then preliminarily tested for their properties individually and in combination with other materials as composite systems. Qualitative observations determined which formulations met the outlined characteristics, and recommendations for future confirmatory testing are made. This thesis suggests an innovative direction for future research for cultural heritage protection.


biomimetic, biogrowth, bioprotection, adhesive filler, consolidation



Date Posted: 08 July 2022