About the Photographic Activity Test

The Photographic Activity Test (PAT) was developed by the Image Permanence Institute of the United States to test the quality of photographic storage materials. It is the subject of International Standards Organisation standard ISO 18916:2007 Imaging materials – Processed imaging materials – Photographic activity test for enclosure materials.

The previous standard ISO 14523:1999 describes the test as a 'predictive test of interactions between storage enclosure[s] and photographic image[s]. It can also be used to evaluate possible photographic activity caused by components of enclosures such as adhesives, inks, paints, labels, and tape.'

Put simply, the test indicates whether a material is likely to damage photographs, negatives, slides, motion picture films, etc. The test looks for chemical interactions that manifest as discolourations of photographic material. If a product fails the test, it should not be allowed near photographic materials.

To carry out the PAT, samples of the enclosure material to be tested are stacked into a 'sandwich' held in a stainless steel jig. A second control sandwich is prepared using a known good enclosure material. Samples are then incubated in a temperature and humidity-controlled chamber at 70 °C and 86 per cent RH. If after 15 days the detectors incubated with the test enclosures are either more faded, much less faded or are more stained than those incubated with the controls, the enclosure material fails the test. Fading and staining are measured using a high quality photographic densitometer. The pass/fail limits are derived from enclosures that actually cause fading or staining in real-life storage situations.

Regardless of claims made by manufacturers or suppliers about the archival quality of their products, do not assume that these products have been subjected to a PAT or that they have passed the test. The PAT is quite separate from, and additional to, normal notions of archival quality.

Products bearing the National Archives Archival Quality trademark are exceptions to this rule. These products have passed the PAT.

The National Archives of Australia is committed to ensuring the quality of products used for storing archival materials. As part of this commitment the Archives will test any product submitted by a user or manufacturer which is designed to store archival photographic material safely.

Products that have already been subjected to a PAT are listed in the table below . More products will be added as they are tested.

Please note:

  • The test results reported here are intended for general information and do not imply an endorsement of any manufacturer, supplier or product cited. Professional advice should be sought before applying the information to particular circumstances.
  • The results given here necessarily apply only to the specific samples tested at a given time by the National Archives of Australia. Each run of paper, board, plastic, etc from a given mill or manufacturer can, and probably will be different. Therefore, National Archives test results may not be applicable to products ordered from the same suppliers today.
  • From the beginning of 1999 the National Archives paper testing facility was accredited by the National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA) to carry out a range of tests including the PAT. Testing after that date has therefore been carried out to the standard required by NATA. Before 1999 testing was carried out according to the ISO standard but without NATA accreditation.

Photographic Activity Test – products that have passed the test

Paper and board productsSupplierManufacturerTest year
Archivart photographic storage paperZetta FlorenceArchivart® Products for Conservation and Restoration1996
Archivart library board (light grey)Zetta FlorenceArchivart® Products for Conservation and Restoration1996
Archivart interleaving paperZetta FlorenceArchivart® Products for Conservation and Restoration1996
Archive Text (copy paper)Conservation Resourcesnot supplied1996
Barrier paperCanson Australia (Arjo Wiggins)Canson Australia (Arjo Wiggins)1996
Renaissance tissue (unbuffered)Light Impressionsnot supplied1996
Mohawk digital paperUniversity Productsnot supplied1996
Rising museum mount boardNeenah Paper (formerly Rising Paper)not supplied1996
Archivart Photo-Tex TissueZetta FlorenceArchivart® Products for Conservation and Restoration1997
Fuji Xerox – 'X' (copy paper)Fuji Xerox AustraliaFuji Xerox Australia1999
Fuji Xerox – ‘Gold’ (copy paper)Fuji Xerox AustraliaFuji Xerox Australia1999
Optix offset Milli Vanilla – 110 gsmAustralian PaperAustralian Paper2000
Book binding board, ouble sided (smooth/texturedX–Press Graph–Xnot supplied2000
White core board, 1 mmX–Press Graph–Xnot supplied2000
Multimat (mat board)X–Press Graph–Xnot supplied2000
ProLong 500 year watermarked archival laser/copy PaperConservation Resourcesnot supplied2001
500 Year™ corrugated archival board (blue/grey)
1. single wall
2. double wall
Zetta FlorenceVisy2002
500 Year™ archival barrier paper, watermarked
1. 90 gsm
2. 120 gsm
3. 150 gsm
Zetta Florencenot supplied2003
500 Year™ folder board (white) 260 gsm, 330 gsmZetta Florencenot supplied2003
500 Year™ buffered envelopes
1. 90 gsm seamless style, standard style
2. 120 gsm seamless style, standard style
Zetta Florencenot supplied2003
Paperboard inserts
1. Cream
2. Black
3. white
Albox Australianot supplied2003
 ProLong 500 year archival folder board 270 gsmConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003
ProLong 500 year watermarked archival laser/copy paper 80 gsmConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003
ProLong 500 year archival barrier paper, watermarked 80 gsmConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003
ProLong 500 year archival corrugated board (blue/grey), single wall and double wallConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003
Library board, light weightCanson Australia (Arjo Wiggins)Canson Australia (Arjo Wiggins)2003
Canson conservation boardThe Heirloom Box CompanyCanson Australia (Arjo Wiggins)2003
1. 179 gsm file folder, manila (buff)
2. 179 gsm file folder (white)
3. 244 gsm file folder, manila (buff)
4. 244 gsm file folder (white)
5. 293 gsm file folder, manila (buff)
6. 285 gsm file folder, manila (buff)
7. 285 gsm file folder (white)
8. 325 gsm file folder, manila (buff)
9. 325 gsm file folder (white)
10. 375 gsm file folder, manila (buff)
11. 375 gsm file folder (white)
JackarooInternational Paper2003
Cotton linter paperAustralian PaperAustralian Paper2004
Reflex archival (copy paper)Australian PaperAustralian Paper2004
Mohawk digital paperRolls Filing SystemRaleigh Paper2005
Green/grey library board
1. 240 gsm
2. 490 gsm
Zetta Florencenot supplied2003 & 2006
500 Year™ archival foldersZetta Florencenot supplied2003 & 2006
Perpetuum Wove, 90 gsm (code PAP A4–90)Archival Survivalnot supplied2003 & 2006
ProLong 500 year archival folder board (white), 270 gsmConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003 & 2006
ProLong 500 year archival envelopes, watermarked, 80 gsm, buffered, ungummedConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003 & 2006
ProLong 500 year archival folders and document wallets (white), 270 gsmConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003 & 2006
Archival folder board (white), 320 gsmZetta FlorenceAustralian Paper2006
500 Year™ archival photocopy paper, watermarked
1. 90 gsm
2. 120 gsm
3. 150 gsm
Zetta Florencenot supplied2006
Archival corrugated board, (blue/grey) single wall and double wallArchival Survivalnot supplied2006
Buffered envelopes (seamless), 90 gsm  (code ENCSEAM 85X110)Archival Survivalnot supplied2006
Archival folder board (white), 320 gsmArchival Survivalnot supplied2006
Green grey library board, 240 gsm (10 point)Archival Survivalnot supplied2006
Green grey library board, 490gsm (20 point)Archival Survivalnot supplied2006
ProLong 500 year archival, four flap folder (15 mm expansion), 270 gsm (retested)Conservation Resourcesnot supplied2006
Archival folder  (codes UFF701, UDW704  & ULW705)JackarooInternational Paper2006
500 year archival photocopy paper A4, watermarked
1. 120 gsm
2. 150 gsm
JackarooInternational Paper2006
1. 163 gsm (#100) hi-yield manila file folder board (buff)
2. 202 gsm (#124) hi-yield manila file folder board (buff)
3. 293 gsm (#180) hi-yield manila file folder board
4. 293 gsm (#180) hi-yield file folder board (white)
5. 374 gsm (#180) hi-yield manila file folder board
6. 374 gsm (#180) hi-yield file folder board (white)
JackarooInternational Paper2006
Millennium manila board
1. 244 gsm (buff)
2. 285 gsm (buff)
3. 285 gsm (white)
4. 326 gsm (buff)
5. 326 gsm (white)
6. 374 gsm (buff)
7. 374 gsm (white)
Rolls Filing Systemnot supplied2003 & 2007
Book binding board, double sided (smooth/textured)X–Press Graph–XX–Press Graph–X2008
Conservation board, 300 gsm, 1000 µmGuisePaknot supplied2008
Ultimate Archive paperRolls Filing Systemnot supplied2008 & 2009
Acid Free White  paper, 400 µmGuisePaknot supplied2009
Archival liner boardAustralian PaperShoalhaven Paper Mills2009
Klug Karton board
1. 350 µm, 330 gsm
2. 277 µm, 240 gsm
3. 1600 µm, 560 gsm
GuisePaknot supplied2009
Archival liner (blue/grey), 220 gsmGuisePaknot supplied2009
Corrugated boards E Flute (grey/natural white), 1.60 mmGuisePaknot supplied2009
Ultimate ArchiveRolls Filing Systemnot supplied2009
Archival Liner Board, blue/greyAustralian PaperShoalhaven Mill2009
Archival Liner, blue/greyGuisePaknot supplied2009
Klug Corrugated Board  (Ref KCB BF), 1600 µm, 560 gsmGuisePaknot supplied2009
Acid-free library board
1. 665 x 970 mm, 280 gsm, code: ZFLIB180P
2. 505 x 735 mm, 280 gsm, code: ZFLIB190P
Zetta Florencenot supplied2010
Brilliant Enclosures, 5 x 7" M415X7-A-5Zetta Florencenot supplied2010
500 Year™ corrugated archival board, blue/grey, double wall and single wallZetta Florencenot supplied2010
Seamless envelope, 90 gsm (off white) (code PAPSEA)Zetta Florencenot supplied2010
Barrier paper APP/ZFBP (off white) , 90 gsm & 120 gsmZetta Florencenot supplied2010
PAPENV7RECORD, 18.3 x 18.3 cm envelopeZetta Florencenot supplied2010
Archival (grey, blue/white) corrugated board (Code GPO31B)GuisePaknot supplied2010
500 Year™ Corrugated Archival Board, single wall, blue/grey,  (code MUB)Zetta Florencenot supplied2010
500 Year™ Corrugated Archival Board, double wall, blue grey,  (code MUB)Zetta Florencenot supplied2010
PAPENV7RECORD, envelope, 18.3 x 18.3 cmZetta Florencenot supplied2010
Copy Paper, 80 gsmZetta Florencenot supplied2011
Perpetuum Wove paper, 120 gsmArchival Survival Pty Ltdnot supplied2012
Saxton Chardonnay paper 140gsmSpicersSaxton2012
Library Board (code BRDLIB)
1. 240 gsm
2. 490 gsm
Archival Survival Pty LtdNot supplied2012
Archival Corrugated Board, blue/grey, single wall (code BRDMUB)Archival Survival Pty Ltdnot supplied2012
Archival Corrugated Board blue/grey, double wall, (code BRDMUB)Archival Survival Pty Ltdnot supplied2012
Buffered Seamless Envelopes, 90 gsmArchival Survival Pty Ltdnot supplied2012
Archival folder (code FLDMAN)
1. 260 gsm
2. 320 gsm
Archival Survival Pty Ltdnot supplied2012
Plastic productsSupplierManufacturerTest year
Polyethylene envelopeZetta Florencenot supplied1996
Polypropylene 35 mm negative page – 6 stripAlbox AustraliaAlbox Australia1996
Lexan polycarbonate FilmMulford PlasticsSABIC Innovative Plastics1996
Archival Plus polypropylene storage bagClear FileClear File1996
Corex polypropylene fluteboard (grey)Corex PlasticsCorex Plastics1996
Cellair (closed cell foam)Metro Foam ProductsPrecision Foam Manufacturing1996
Tyvek (spun bonded polyolefin) tape (adhesive and carrier tested separately)Zetta FlorenceDuPont USA1997
Marbig folder sleeve and refill sleeveThe Q Store / Webshopsnot supplied1997
Polyethylene storage bagsUniversity Productsnot supplied1997
Glad zip-lock bagsWoolworthsThe Dow Chemical Company1997
Semi-rigid polypropyleneAbbey Plastics Productsnot supplied2003
Ever Fast file pin holder Code 81996Avery Dennison Office Productsnot supplied2004
Manila file folder, 285 gsmMcDonald Printing Groupnot supplied2005
Mylar film 75 µm and 100 µmZetta Florencenot supplied2006
Aeroflex EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer), 7 mm thick, closed cell elastometric thermal insulationAirefrig AustraliaAeroflex2006
Cellaire, polyethylene foam cushioning material
1. 2 mm thick Code RH0210
2. 6 mm thick Code RH06D
Bunzl/Sealed Air Australianot supplied2006
Ethafoam 220, polyethylene foam, closed cell, 100 mm thickDunlop FoamsDunlop Foams2006
EVA 30, ethylene vinyl acetate foam, 15 mm thick (Code Q86454)Dunlop FoamsDunlop Foams2006
EVA 45, ethylene vinyl acetate foam, 11 mm thick, creamDunlop FoamsDunlop Foams2006
Garfilm EMCL (polyethylene terephthalate film)MultapexGarware Polyester2006
Garfilm EMSC PT077, (polyester film)MultapexGarware Polyester2006
Foam core board – 5 mm Gold OW (J)Quill Stationery ManufacturersQuill Stationery Manufacturers2006
Evazote EV50, EVA copolymer foam, 10 mm thick (white)Sekisui PilonZotefoams2006
Plastazote LD45, closed cell, cross-linked polythene foam, 10 mm thickSekisui PilonZotefoams2006
Polypropylene boxAlbox AustraliaAlbox Australia 1996 & 2006
Clear LDPE continuous roll, 50 mm wide x 100 micron thickPinpak–Grayson PackagingPinpak–Grayson Packaging2007
Mylar film, 100 µm thickness (A4 sized)Maria Anttemsnot given2011
Nomapack Foam
1. Grey
2. Blue (PAD Profile)
3. Bright Yellow (WS 33*264 Edge Pad)
Labels, tapes and adhesivesSupplierManufacturerTest year
Elna Press #7815 barcode label (polyester base and #310 Hi Precision acrylic adhesive)
(adhesive and carrier tested separately)
The Elna PressThe Elna Press1997
3M 305 tape3M Australia3M USA1997
3M 415 double-sided tape3M Australia3M USA1997
Filmoplast P90 – repair tape (adhesive and carrier tested separately)Hughes MouldingsNeschen AG1997
Splicing tape, 25 mm (adhesive and carrier tested separately)Christy's Editorial Film and Video Supplynot supplied1997
'Cine Care' film splicing tape – 16 mm (adhesive and carrier tested separately)John Barrynot supplied1997
Elna Press 'Supalux' barcode label (polypropylene base and 'SP240' adhesive)
(adhesive and carrier tested separately)
The Elna PressThe Elna Press1997
'Zetta Florence double-sided tape'Zetta FlorenceDuPont USA1997
Gripit adhesive (Code 3113)Henkel AdhesivesHenkel Adhesives2002
Evasol – EVA adhesive, buffered, acid-free and reversibleConservation Resourcesnot supplied2003
Fuji archival laminating filmDirect National Business Machines and Suppliesnot supplied2006
Nichiban Double Sided Tape (6mm)Regal Craft Cardsnot supplied2012
Optically clear double sided mounting filmStarleaton Digital Solutionsnot given2012
Fusion 4000 dry mount adhesiveD&K Framing Products (USA)Bienfang Framing Products, a Division of Elmer's products Inc.2012
Photo storage (sleeves, albums and photo corners)SupplierManufacturerTest year
Slide sleevesChampion PlasticsChampion Plastics1996
Heritage photo album, Tomahawk
1. Creme leaf paper
2. Black leaf paper
Salmat (formerly Hermes Precisa Australia)not supplied1996
Negative preservers,  Print File (Code 35–6HB)Get Smart Productsnot supplied1996
Slide Guard polypropylene sleeveLight Impressionsnot supplied1996
Memory scrapbook page (paper and plastic elements)Grant Studionot supplied2003
Pocket page photo album page (paper and plastic elements)Grant Studionot supplied2003
Photo album page, white, (paper and plastic elements)Grant Studionot supplied2003
Magnetic photograph album page (paper, plastic and adhesive elements)Grant Studionot supplied2003
Dry mount photo album (black page and interleaf)Abbey Plastics Productsnot supplied2004
Photo corners – 250, LERO 81/03Albox Australianot supplied2004
Polypropylene photo album coverAlbox AustraliaAlbox Australia2004
Cine film storageSupplierManufacturerTest year
Polypropylene film canister, round (grey, blue)Tuscan IndustriesTuscan Industries1996
Polypropylene film canister, square (blue)Tuscan IndustriesTuscan Industries1996
Film canister (blue) fire retardantTuscan IndustriesTuscan Industries1997
Film canister, polypropylene (grey)
1. MB 91603A
2. MB 91603B
3. MB 91603C
4. MB 91603D
5. MB 91603E
6. MB 91603F
Tuscan IndustriesTuscan Industries2004
ClothSupplierManufacturerTest year
Brushed Nylon (black)
1. Washed
2. Unwashed
Spyder Displays Ltdnot supplied2012
Parsilk, 100% Polyester, washed
1. Brown
2. white
Charles Parsonsnot supplied2012
Washed Calico, natural, 100% cottonLincraftnot supplied2012
Washed Japara, natural, 100% cottonMaterial Worldnot supplied2012

Suppliers and manufacturers

Unless otherwise indicated supplier and manufacturer contact details are Australia-based:

Abbey Plastics Products
Tel: (02) 9604 7800
Website: abbeygroup.com.au

Aeroflex International
Website: aeroflexinsulation.com

Airefrig Australia&
Tel: 1800 671 500
Website: airefrig.com.au

Albox Australia
Tel: 1300 555 717
Email: albox@albox.com.au
Website: albox.com.au

Maria Anttems
Tel: (03) 9799 9073

Archival Survival
Tel: 1300 781 199
Email: info@archivalsurvival.com.au
Website: archivalsurvival.com.au

Archivart® Products for Conservation and Restoration (USA)
Tel: +1 (888) 846 6847
Email: askarchivart@nbframing.com
Website: archivart.com

Australian Paper
Tel: (03) 8540 2300
Website: australianpaper.com.au

Avery Dennison Office Products
Tel: 1800 644 353
Email: consumerservice-au@averydennison.com
Website: averyproducts.com.au

Britestar Australia Pty Ltd
Tel: 02 9697 9147
Email: sales@britestar.com.au
Website: britestar.com.au

Bunzl/Sealed Air Australia
Tel: (03) 9590 3000
Email: info@bunzl.com.au
Website: bunzl.com.au

Canson Australia (Arjo Wiggins)
Tel: (03) 9701 8266
Email: sales@canson.com.au
Website: canson.com.au

Champion Plastics (USA)
Tel: +1 (800) 526 1230
Email: sales@championplastics.com
Website: championplastics.com

Charles Parsons
Tel: 02 9910 4100
Website: charlesparsons.com

Christy's Editorial Film and Video Supply(USA)
Tel: +1 (818) 845 1755
Email: info@christys.net
Website: christys.net

Clear File(USA)
Tel: +1 (407) 703 1905
Website: clearfile.com

Conservation Resources
Tel: 1300 651 408
Email: sales@conservationresources.com.au
Website: conservationresources.com.au

Corex Plastics
Tel: (613) 9238 1300
Email: info@corex.net.au
Website: corex.net.au

D&K Framing Products (USA)
Tel: 888.240.6021
Website: forframersonly.com

Direct National Business Machines and Supplies
Tel: (07) 3352 4222
Website: directnational.com.au

The Dow Chemical Company (USA)
Website: dow.com

Dunlop Foams
Tel: (03) 9215 2020
Email: info@dunlopfoams.com.au
Website: dunlopfoams.com.au

DuPont (USA)
Website: dupont.com

The Elna Press
Tel: 1800 337 384
Email: info@elnapress.com.au
Website: elnapress.com.au

Fuji Xerox Australia
Tel: 1300 667 955
Website: fujixerox.com.au

Garware Polyester(India)
Tel: +91 22 6698 8000
Email: ho@garwarepoly.com
Website: garwarepoly.com

Grant Studios
Tel: (030) 9509 2228
Website: grant.com.au

Tel: (03) 9584 8388
Email: info@guisegroup.com.au
Website: guisegroup.com.au

The Heirloom Shadow Box Company (USA)

Henkel Adhesives (Australia/New Zealand)
Website: henkel.com.au

Hughes Mouldings
Tel: (07) 3275 4321

IDS Packaging
Website: idspackaging.com

International Paper (USA)
Tel: +1 (888) 478 9448
Website: internationalpaper.com

Tel: (02) 9976 1300
Email: info@jackaroo-pl.com.au
Website: jackaroopaper.com.au

John Barry
Tel: (02) 9355 2300
Website: johnbarry.com.au

Light Impressions (USA)
Tel: +1800 975 6429
Email: help@fdmbrands.com
Website: lightimpressionsdirect.com

Website: lincraft.com.au

Material World
Tel: 02 6372 6826
Email: sales@materialworld.com.au
Website: materialworld.com.au

McDonald Printing Group
Tel: (03) 9646 3700
Email: melbourne@mcdpg.com.au
Website: mcdonaldprinting.com.au

Metro Foam Products
Tel: (02) 9748 8588
Website: metrofoam.com.au

Mulford Plastics
Tel: 2 9911 8111
Website: mulfordplastics.com

Tel: (02) 9153 7999
Email: info@multapex.com.au
Website: multapex.com.au

Neenah Paper (formerly Rising Paper) (USA)
Tel: + 1800 994 5993
Website: neenahpaper.com

Neschen AG (Germany)
Tel: +49 (0) 57 22 2070
Email: neschen@neschen.de
Website: www.neschen.com

Pinpak–Grayson Packaging
Tel: 1300 855 571
Email: info@pinpak.com.au
Website: pinpak.com.au

Precision Foam Manufacturing
Tel: (02) 4587 7588
Email: sales@precisionfoam.com.au
Website: precisionfoam.com.au

The Q Store / Webshops
Tel: 1800 444 419
Email: sales@theqstore.com.au
Website: webshops.com.au

Quill Stationery Manufacturers
Tel: (02) 9781 0800
Email: sales@quillstationery.com.au
Website: quillstationery.com.au

Raleigh Paper
Tel: (02) 8883 1200
Website: bjball.com.au

Regal Craft Cards
Tel: (03)6331 4222
Website: regalcraftcards.com.au

Rolls Filing System
Tel: 1300 600 192
Email: salesdept@rollspl.com.au
Website: rollspl.com.au

SABIC Innovative Plastics (USA)
Tel: +1 (413) 448 7110
Website: sabic-ip.com

Salmat (formerly Hermes Precisa Australia)
Tel: 1300 725 628
Website: salmat.com.au

Sekisui Pilon
Tel: (02) 9525 9880
Email: info@pilon.com.au
Website: sekisuipilon.com.au

Tel: (03) 9730 9730
Website: spicers.com.au

Spyder Displays Ltd
Tel: 07 3802 5888
Website: spyder.com.au

Starleaton Digital Solutions
T: (02) 9905 5441
Website: starleaton.com.au

3M Australia
Tel: 136 136
Website: solutions.3m.com.au

Tuscan Industries
Tel: (02) 9699 2422
Email: info@tuscancorp.com
Website: tuscancorp.com

University Products(USA)
Tel: (toll free) 1 800 628 1912
Email: info@universityproducts.com
Website: universityproducts.com

Tel: 13 8479
Email: customer.service@visy.com.au
Website: visy.com.au

Tel: 1300 767 969
Website: woolworths.com.au

X–Press Graph–X
Tel:1300 853 502
Website: xpressgraphx.com.au

Zetta Florence
Tel: 1300 555 124
Email: info@zettaflorence.com.au
Website: zettaflorence.com.au

Zotefoams (England)
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8664 1600
Email: info@zotefoams.com
Website: zotefoams.com


Further information

For additional information about the PAT used by the National Archives, contact the Agency Service Centre.

For further information on the Photographic Activity Test itself, contact:

Image Permanence Institute
Rochester Institute of Technology
Tel: (585) 475-5199
Email: ipiwww@rit.edu
Website: imagepermanenceinstitute.org

Copyright National Archives of Australia 2019