|Director||Robert J. Koestler|
|Public transit access||Suitland|
The Smithsonian's Museum Conservation Institute(MCI) aims to be the center for specialized conservation and technical collection research for all of the Smithsonian museums and collections. MCI's staff combine state-of-the-art instrumentation and scientific techniques with the knowledge of materials and the history of technology to provide technical research studies and interpretation of art, as well as historical and anthropological objects, to improve the conservation and collections storage capabilities at the Smithsonian. For the majority of the Smithsonian collections, MCI is the only Smithsonian resource for technical studies and analyses.
The Smithsonian Institution, also known simply as the Smithsonian, is a group of museums and research centers administered by the Government of the United States. It was founded on August 10, 1846, "for the increase and diffusion of knowledge". The institution is named after its founding donor, British scientist James Smithson. It was originally organized as the "United States National Museum", but that name ceased to exist as an administrative entity in 1967.
Research is "creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of humans, culture and society, and the use of this stock of knowledge to devise new applications." It is used to establish or confirm facts, reaffirm the results of previous work, solve new or existing problems, support theorems, or develop new theories. A research project may also be an expansion on past work in the field. Research projects can be used to develop further knowledge on a topic, or in the example of a school research project, they can be used to further a student's research prowess to prepare them for future jobs or reports. To test the validity of instruments, procedures, or experiments, research may replicate elements of prior projects or the project as a whole. The primary purposes of basic research are documentation, discovery, interpretation, or the research and development (R&D) of methods and systems for the advancement of human knowledge. Approaches to research depend on epistemologies, which vary considerably both within and between humanities and sciences. There are several forms of research: scientific, humanities, artistic, economic, social, business, marketing, practitioner research, life, technological, etc. The scientific study of research practices is known as meta-research.
The Smithsonian's Board of Regentsestablished the Conservation Research Laboratory of the United States National Museum in 1963 in response to a growing need to support conservation of the entire Institution's collections.
In 1965 the name of the laboratory was changed to the Conservation Analytical Laboratory (CAL). In 1983, the laboratory moved to the Museum Support Centerin Suitland, Maryland. Congress mandated a national conservation training program among other wider responsibilities including an expanded conservation science research program.
The Board of Regents approved a name change to the Smithsonian Center for Materials Research and Education (SCMRE) in 1998. SCMRE's mission was to serve all museum communities - national and international, and provide professional training and education programs.
In 2006 the Board of Regents approved the name change to the Museum Conservation Institute (MCI).
Robert J. Koestler,2004-
Lambertus van Zelst, 1984–2003
Robert M. Organ, 1967–1983
Charles H. Olin, 1966–1967
MCI's laboratories are equipped with advanced analytical instrumentation,including:
The Smithsonian's Museum Conservation Institute and the Institut Photonique d’Analyse Non-destructive Européen des Matériaux Anciens platform at Soleil have formed a partnership to use the power of the third-generation synchrotron to study and preserve the priceless Smithsonian collections.
Analytical chemistry studies and uses instruments and methods used to separate, identify, and quantify matter. In practice, separation, identification or quantification may constitute the entire analysis or be combined with another method. Separation isolates analytes. Qualitative analysis identifies analytes, while quantitative analysis determines the numerical amount or concentration.
The conservation and restoration of cultural heritage focuses on protection and care of tangible cultural heritage, including artworks, architecture, archaeology, and museum collections. Conservation activities include preventive conservation, examination, documentation, research, treatment, and education. This field is closely allied with conservation science, curators and registrars.
The Smithsonian American Art Museum is a museum in Washington, D.C., part of the Smithsonian Institution. Together with its branch museum, the Renwick Gallery, SAAM holds one of the world's largest and most inclusive collections of art, from the colonial period to the present, made in the United States. The museum has more than 7,000 artists represented in the collection. Most exhibitions take place in the museum's main building, the old Patent Office Building, while craft-focused exhibitions are shown in the Renwick Gallery.
The Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities (ABRF) is dedicated to advancing core and research biotechnology laboratories through research, communication, and education. ABRF members include over 900 scientists representing 340 different core laboratories in 41 countries, including those in industry, government, academic and research institutions.
Donald F. Hunt is the University Professor of Chemistry and Pathology at the University of Virginia. He is known for his research in the field of mass spectrometry, he developed electron capture negative ion mass spectrometry. He has received multiple awards for his work including the Distinguished Contribution Award from the American Society for Mass Spectrometry and the Thomson Medal from the International Mass Spectrometry Society.
The Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences (BSNES) is a fully accredited degree-granting institution and the primary college of undergraduate and graduate scientific research at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It was formed in 1994 with the separation of the Biological Sciences, Chemistry, and Biochemistry departments from the former College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and subsequently named in honor of the Bayer Corporation. The school currently houses the departments of Biological Sciences, Biotechnology, Biochemistry, Chemistry, Environmental Science & Management, Forensic Science & Law, and Physics. The school also collaborates closely with the Duquesne University School of Pharmacy. In 2010, the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry was designated as a Mass Spectrometry Center of Excellence by Agilent Technologies, allowing for collaborative research into metabolics, proteomics, disease biomarkers, and environmental analysis. In 2011, Duquesne University became one of 98 universities nationwide, and one of nine Catholic universities, to be designated as a high research activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation.
Smithsonian Libraries (SIL), formerly known as Smithsonian Institution Libraries, is a library system comprising 20 branch libraries serving the various Smithsonian Institution museums and research centers, as well as central support services which include a Book Conservation Laboratory and an Imaging Center. The Libraries serve Smithsonian Institution staff as well as the scholarly community and general public with information and reference support. Its collections number over 1.5 million volumes including 40,000 rare books and 2,000 manuscripts. The Libraries also holds the United States' largest trade literature collection, which includes over 300,000 commercial catalogs dating from the early nineteenth century and representing more than 30,000 companies.
Charles W. Gehrke was an American chemist, researcher and business entrepreneur.
Pittcon Editors’ Awards honoured the best new products on show at the Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy, or Pittcon, for 20 years from 1996 having been established by Dr Gordon Wilkinson, managing editor of Analytical Instrument Industry Report. On 8 March 2015, the event returned to the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans and this was the last occasion when the awards were presented.
The Smithsonian Institution's Museum Support Center (MSC) is a collections storage and conservation facility in Suitland, Maryland which houses Smithsonian collections which are not on display in the museums. It is not usually open to the public, due to security concerns, though occasionally special tours are organized.
Instrumental analysis is a field of analytical chemistry that investigates analytes using scientific instruments.
Milton L. Lee is the H. Tracy Hall Professor of Chemistry at Brigham Young University (BYU).
The Rathgen Research Laboratory is a Research Institute of the Berlin State Museums under the auspices of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation. It carries out cross-material conservation science, art technology and archaeometry studies of fine arts and cultural artifacts to determine composition, age and authenticity and provide advice on their restoration. It further conducts academic research on scientific issues concerning the care and preservation of monuments and archaeological sites. Founded in 1888 as the Chemical Laboratory of the Royal Museums in Berlin, it is the oldest museum laboratory in world and bears the name of its first Director, Dr. Friedrich Rathgen.
Richard Dale Smith is an award-winning chemist and a Battelle Fellow and Chief Scientist within the Biological Sciences Division, as well as the Director of Proteomics Research at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Dr. Smith is also Director of the NIH Proteomics Research Resource for Integrative Biology, Principal Investigator for the U. S. Department of Energy Office of Biological and Environmental Research Genome Sciences Program's 'Pan-omics' program at PNNL, an adjunct faculty member in the chemistry departments at Washington State University and the University of Utah, and an affiliate faculty member at the University of Idaho and the Department of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology, Oregon Health & Science University. He is the author or co-author of approximately 1000 peer-reviewed publications and has been awarded 51 US patents.
A conservation scientist is a museum professional who works in the field of conservation science and whose focus is on the research of cultural heritage through scientific inquiry. Conservation scientists conduct applied scientific research and techniques to determine the material, chemical, and technical aspects of cultural heritage. The technical information conservation scientists gather is then used by conservator and curators to decide the most suitable conservation treatments for the examined object and/or adds to our knowledge about the object by providing answers about the material composition, fabrication, authenticity, and previous restoration treatments.
Conservation and restoration at the Smithsonian Institution deals with the care of the 138 million artifacts located in the collections of Smithsonian Institution. Work is conducted by one research center, the Museum Conservation Institute (MCI), and by conservators at the Smithsonian's museums, galleries, zoo. Smithsonian conservators provide myriad services to their units, including exhibit preparation of the museum collection and loan objects, advising on object care, training for future generations of conservationists, engaging in routine preventive care on a daily basis, conducting research projects related to the collections, and examining objects for evidence of manufacturing techniques and previous restorations All conservation labs collectively further the mission of the Smithsonian Institution, "the increase and diffusion of knowledge." Founded in 1846 the Smithsonian is the world's largest museum and research complex, consisting of 19 museums and galleries, the National Zoological Park, and nine research facilities.
French national institute of cultural heritage, called Institut national du patrimoine (Inp), is the only academy in France in charge of the training of both curators and conservators. It belongs to French Ministry of Culture and is organized in 2 departments.