This paper describes the results and conclusions of research directed towards the development and evaluation of a chemical
sensor which would provide information on the quality of indoor environments surrounding cultural objects. In our case these
objects were paintings housed in major European galleries and the main objective is their preservation through an improved
understanding of their microenvironment. The concept was to prepare and expose test tempera paintings which would behave as
dosimeters and integrate the environmental response at these locations. Artificial ageing of similar samples was performed
to provide a means of calibrating the test paintings. Samples from the test paintings were compared with artificially aged
samples and this enabled the sites to be ranked in terms of their suitability for exposure of cultural objects.
Additionally, novel methodology involving piezoelectric sensors was designed for monitoring the relative humidity and temperature
of the microenvironment of paintings. Dielectric techniques were also used for measuring the effect of relative humidity fluctuations
on artists' materials and novel non-invasive dielectric techniques in the microwave region were used for the determination
of their moisture content.