Heating and cooling solutions expert, CIAT, recently supplied the air management and handling system for the completely renovated Picasso Museum (Musée Picasso) in Paris.
The new equipment purifies the air inside the museum and maintains constant humidity and temperature levels to better preserve the museum's works and slow down their ageing.
After being closed for renovation work for several years, France's national Picasso Museum reopened its doors to the public on 25 October 2014. The museum is housed in the Hôtel Salé, a grand mansion located in Paris' historic Marais district.
The mansion has been completely brought up to standards particularly in terms of security, conservation conditions of the national collections housed in the museum, and access for people with disabilities. The architectural restoration, modernisation and renovation project was awarded to architects Bodin & Associés and overseen by Stéphane Thouin, chief architect of France's historic monuments.
The museum houses 5,000 works of art and archives of 200,000 items and is visited each year by 500,000 people. The renovation work included a complete transformation of the museum's exhibition space and cultural offer. The surface area accessible to the public was nearly tripled and now covers 6,300 m2.
Keeping the art intact
The Egis engineering group conducted the design studies and monitored the completion of the museum's structures and service and equipment packages. The company SNEF Clim was in charge of the heating and ventilation package as well as the plumbing. CIAT was selected to install the entire museum's air handling system.
Mr. FAZZUTTI, from SNEF Clim, said: "We are used to working with the CIAT Group. They have a comprehensive offer, from cooling systems to comfort units, that is particularly suited to complex projects such as this".
The first technical challenge CIAT had to overcome was complying with the constraints in terms of space inside the museum. In this respect, CIAT made all the difference. Their engineers worked to configure the smallest possible chillers and air handling units.
The smallest footprint
By choosing the best components from its standard range, CIAT was able to create the most suitable solutions. For example, the size of the chillers was reduced so that they would fit through the museum's doorways and inside its goods lifts. Installed in the museum's basement, they measure less than 2 m high by 1 m wide – a feat when you consider that they offer capacities of nearly 500 kW. The museum's air handling units are located in its roof space. All their components were specifically selected to ensure the smallest footprint possible.
The second challenge was maintaining conditions inside the museum at very precise levels to protect its collections from damage. Temperature and humidity are two particularly important factors in preserving works of art. At the Picasso Museum, they must be maintained at 24°C/50% RH in the summer and at 20°C/50% RH in the winter, with a tolerance of only 3%.