The safety of museum exhibitions has recently become a challenging issue due to the newly different conception of the Museum as a creative and interactive place, where people can be also close to the artefacts. The way of exhibit art objects needs accurate study to assure the simultaneous safety of both artefacts and visitors according to the current increasing safety standards. The earthquakes are the main cause of damage and even failure of art objects, especially in small museums and churches that are largely diffused all over Europe. Therefore, the low-cost protection of artefacts and visitors is key in earthquake-prone areas. In several cases art objects can be modelled as rigid bodies placed on a moving base. To capture their mechanical response, the Housner theory, developed at the beginning of the sixties, represents a valid and accurate tool. Based on this theory, this paper presents a new approach for the preservation of museum artefacts through a low-cost isolation strategy. Art objects are considered as rigid bodies placed on a shaking base and their response is modelled considering both rocking and sliding motions. This paper highlights the need for a correct optimisation of both base shape and friction coefficient in order to drive the artefact response in more stable dynamics regions. The proposed approach effectiveness is tested on a real case study, an acephalous marble statue in the Archaeological Museum of Paestum.
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