The majority of the archive records in the Federal Archives are analogue, for example on paper. The conditions under which they are stored are clearly defined. In future the proportion of digital documents will increase.
The Federal Archives currently administer over 60 linear kilometres of archive records. That figure grows by around 1.5 linear kilometres a year. The vast majority of the documents are in the form of paper. They are archived under constant climatic conditions (18°C +/- 1°C, 50% relative humidity +/- 5%).
The Federal Archives also hold audiovisual records including video and audio cassettes, microfilms, photographic prints and negatives, as well as slides and glass plates. They are kept separate from paper and stored under appropriate climatic conditions (16°C +/- 1°C, 35% relative humidity +/- 5%). However, it is becoming increasingly difficult to provide suitable equipment for playing audiovisual documents. It is also virtually impossible to safeguard the quality of the information over the long term. The Federal Archives therefore increasingly acquire such data in digital form, or digitise audiovisual source materials on demand.
Norms and standards
Paper can only be stored long-term if it is resistant to ageing. The paper used for archiving must comply with at least one of the DIN-6738 or ISO 9706 standards.