Storage environment for audiovisual materials

Photographic films (motion pictures and stills) should not be stored in a general-purpose repository unless appropriate environmental conditions can be provided. Films should be stored in dust-free metal or inert plastic cans, placed horizontally on metal shelves. Films on a cellulose nitrate base, which are inherently unstable, must not be stored in the repository but deposited in a specialist store that satisfies the requirements of relevant fire regulations. Magnetic tapes should be stored in containers made from aluminium, acid-free board or inert plastic, placed vertically on metal shelving. No electric or electronic apparatus producing magnetic currents that can cause the erasure of the recordings should be permitted in the storage area, nor should tapes be brought within the vicinity of such apparatus or of lightning conductors. Optical recordings are usually on discs that have to be housed in individual jewel cases of archival quality. Ultraviolet radiation and strong light are known to cause rapid deterioration of the optical recording layer. It is important to keep the discs in dark storage as far as possible such as light-proof drawers or boxes.