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Subject: Photographic activity test for plastics

Photographic activity test for plastics

From: Leanne Brandis <preserve>
Date: Friday, March 4, 1994
At the National Library we use polypropylene boxes to store many unbound
journals (and are considering using them for storing microfilm and glass
plate negatives).  We were concerned about a characteristic odour
associated with the polypropylene and whether this may be harmful to
material stored in the plastic boxes.

Testing of the gases evolved from the plastic identified hydrocarbon
gases in very small (nanometer) amounts. In addition, the manufacturer
of the plastic arranged for the Image Permanence Institute to perform
the photographic activity test on the polypropylene. The plastic passed
this test.  However, from our understanding of the test, it is not
applicable to plastics (see ANSI IT9.2-1991 'The photographic activity
test shall not be made on plastics, as the test is not applicable for
these materials').  Does anyone else have any views on whether the test
yields meaningful results for plastics?

Leanne Brandis
Preservation Services
National Library of Australia
Fax: 61-6-257-1703

                  Conservation DistList Instance 7:64
                 Distributed: Wednesday, March 9, 1994
                        Message Id: cdl-7-64-006
Received on Friday, 4 March, 1994

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