On Nov. 14th 2015, the highly-anticipated excavation on the main outer coffin of Marquis Haihun’s tomb (M1) in Nanchang, Jiangxi was started officially. Modern technology is applied in the excavation. Besides electronic total-station measuring, 3D scanning, UAV aerial shooting and constructing of GIS geographic information system, the usage of a low-oxygen workroom is one of the highlights as well.
Mr. XIN Lixiang, head of SACH’s consulting group at the excavation site, says that the excavation and storage afterwards will be handled with water all the time. He explains, due to an oxygen-free environment caused by a heavy inflow of water into the tomb, lots of easy-decayed objects such as lacquer wares in the tomb have been kept in good conditions. For reducing damage that will be occurred by exposing objects to the oxygen after they are excavated, a low-oxygen workroom of 20m² is set up at the site. “This kind of method has never ever been applied before in the domestic”, according to Mr. XIN.
All the easy-oxidized finds from the tomb shall be protected in the low-oxygen workroom. To work inside the workroom is a challenge to the staff. They need to carry oxygen bag during the work and to control the working time.
Besides, a room in 600 m² is ready for storing planks of the outer coffin. Also a working station of 4000 m² is set up for the conservation work on lacquer wares, wooden wares, bamboo/wooden slips, metal objects and textiles that will be unearthed from the tomb.
- Zhongguo Wenwubao 中国文物报 20. 11. 2015, page 9