About this project

B.R. Howard was contracted by Penn State University to provide an assessment of the Armsby Calorimeter Building. The structure was built in 1902 on the main campus and used to house the respiration calorimeter. The calorimeter was used to carry out experiments on the energy metabolism of cattle. By 1946, sheep had been added for study and by the mid-1950s, the calorimeter building was modified to study human energy metabolism. In 1960, the head of this department retired and the calorimeter was no longer used for research and the building was closed.


B.R. Howard observed deterioration of both the architecture and the artifacts during the on-site examination. Active corrosion, flaking and peeling paint, general dust and grime, and embrittlement of organics, rubber, and plastics were all noted. After photo documentation was performed, a detailed investigative report was provided.


Treatment recommendations were proposed for the interior and exterior of the structure.


Proper lighting guidelines were given for the collections within, along with environmental recommendations and treatment options for the artifacts.