The status of temperature measurements and the development of a repair concept
In April 2016, investigations into the temperature development on the stelae began. The procedure was developed by the court-appointed expert and coordinated with the manufacturer of the stelae and the Foundation Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. In order to obtain a holistic picture of the temperature development, measurements were then carried out continuously over several seasons. The expert also selected 15 steles of different sizes, designs and locations in order to examine different renovation methods for possible repair. All work and measurements were carried out with the participation of the stele manufacturer, the Foundation Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe and an independent engineering firm. The annually updated documentation of the crack images of the stelae shows only very minor changes in the condition of the stelae.
On the basis of the annual continuous measurements and the documentation of the crack patterns of the stelae, an expert opinion has been prepared since summer 2021 to determine the causes of crack formation in the stelae of the monument. The subject of this report is the development and examination of a repair concept for the stelae of the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. For this purpose, scientific material tests and other continuous temperature measurements are carried out, and the possible repair concept is also tested in order to determine the most reliable renovation method. Based on the data to be collected, the development of the repair concept takes several temperature cycles. The report is prepared by an engineering office based at the University of Aachen. Completion of the concept was announced for the end of June 2023.
The increased accumulation of moss and lichen on the surface of the stelae is due to the suspended surface cleaning. The cleaning and the associated renewal of the surface protection to ward off moss and lichen growth must be suspended due to the ongoing test and expert assessment procedure, as they can have an influence on the test results.
At the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, cracks of various lengths and widths have been appearing on the side surfaces and/or covers of many stelae for several years. On 18 February 2010, at the request of the Foundation Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, represented by the Senate Department for Urban Development, the Berlin Regional Court opened an independent evidentiary procedure. Since 2012, the condition of the field of stelae has been examined every six months in consultation with the expert. In order to comply with the road safety obligation, 44 particularly affected steles were provided with steel sleeves. There was and is no danger to visitors to the field of stelae.