chapter  8
13 Pages


In many cases the decay of an object is composed of several different decay processes linked together. Thus the decay of waterlogged wood occurs through chemical decay, hydrolysis of cellulose, and consumption of cellulose by micro-organisms (fungi or bacteria depending on the environment) leading to a weakened structure which is then supported by water. The loss of the water (drying) causes physical damage in the form of cell collapse and shrinkage of the cell walls (Cronyn 1990).