Preservation and technical research

All audiovisual materials are subject to degradation and require conservation and sometimes transfer to new formats. The NFSA has teams of expert technicians, skilled in handling all audiovisual media using extensive technical facilities, to help safeguard and provide access to its collection.

The NFSA is acknowledged as a world leader in scientific archival research, and some research projects are detailed in the following technical papers.

  • Faded Silver: Non-chemical Intensification of Faded Images on Cellulose Nitrate Motion Picture Film

    Mick Newnham investigates a process to intensify the silver image that fades when a film is duplicated for preservation.

  • Ventilated film cans

    Mick Newnham outlines NFSA research into film can design, using ventilation to remove the catalysing acids that accelerate film decomposition.

  • Re-adhering a lifted magnetic stripe

    The mid 1950s saw the expansion in the use of magnetic-optical projection systems and the increased demand from television for film with magnetic sound. This was achieved by adding a thin stripe of magnetic material along one side of the film. Over time the striped magnetic coating can lift from the film leading to the loss of the audio component. This project was to look at the modes of failure of the adhesion of the stripe and to develop a technique for readhering the stripe to the film restoring the audio component.

  • Surveying the state of audiovisual archiving in Papua New Guinea

    One of the directions the NFSA is actively pursuing is further developing our relationship with the audiovisual archiving community within the SE Asia and Pacific region.