George Eastman House in Rochester, New York, has a large and important daguerreotype collection numbering thousands of images from all over the world. Considered to be the first form of photography, the daguerreotype was invented in the late 1830s by Louis Daguerre (1787-1851). One of the inventor's own daguerreotypes is in the collection.
Conservators at George Eastman House are using nanotechnology to preserve and stop the decay of the images in their collection. Below is a brief video, The Nanotechnology of the Daguerreotype, that explains the fascinating use of this pioneering technology and what it has helped conservators at Eastman House learn about deterioration of the silver plates on which the images were recorded.
My thanks to the Smithsonian's The Bigger Picture blog where I first learned of the video.
Also of Interest:
The Making of a Daguerreotype (Video)
James Goodman, "George Eastman House Takes Steps to Preserve Daguerreotypes: Effort Aims to Save Old Photographs", Democrat and Chronicle, January 2, 2013
Michael Zhang, "The Beauty of Decayed Daguerreotypes", PetaPixel, January 9, 2013
Use of Nanotechnology to Preserve The Cincinnati Panorama, The Public Library of Cincinnati