For the past 10 years, the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities and the Getty Conservation Institute have been hard at work restoring the wonders of King Tut’s tomb. From cleaning dust build-up to adding extra protective measures for visitors, the focus was on fighting against the natural wear and tear that comes with being a highly trafficked tourist destination.
According to History, the tomb attracts more than 4,000 people a day––and it continued to do so while the renovations were taking place. Aside from the usual dust build-up, there are some special issues that come with opening a previously sealed chamber to the public. For one, the humidity of the air contributed to fungal growth on the tomb’s walls. And then there’s the human-caused afflictions, like scratchitti from inconsiderate guests on the walls.
On top of the general clean-up, professionals also treat the tomb’s murals and paintings. Further research found that old microbial growths that manifested in brown spots along some of the paintings had died and are no longer growing, much to scientists surprise.
History also shared that “additional barriers” that will restrict direct visitor access to the various walls were erected and new systems were installed to improve the ventilation and filtration of the humid air coming into the tomb.
These changes have been slowly happening since 2009, so there’s a chance if you’ve been in the past 10 years, you won’t really notice any difference aside from a cleaner, more clear view at the tomb’s artwork.