University of Mons, Faculty of engineering, Civil engineering & structural mechanics, Mons, Belgium
Royal Museum of Mariemont, Morlanwelz, Belgium
Cellule d’Appui et Contrôle Technique, Direction de la Restauration, DGO4, Service Public de Wallonie,Namur, Belgium

The purpose of this program is to get a better understanding of the behaviour of historical and contemporary mortars. The objective is the improvement of the restoration habits, which could be usefully re-oriented in order to upgrade practices on restoration sites and to ensure the permanence of heritage monuments. Mortar samples from buildings and ruins of all periods from all over the Walloon Region (Belgium) have been collected to determine their physico-mechanical properties in order to compare them with those of contemporary mortars. A global methodology has been developed to characterize the mortars based on physical properties (porosity, density, ultrasonic velocity) and strength properties. The strength property characterization was performed by doing scratching and micro-drilling tests. The physico-mechanical characterization methodology developed by our research program provides a precise and rigorous mechanical evaluation of very small samples of historical mortars.
Key words
mortar, heritage, experimental, porosity, density, rigidity, strength