Cold Storage in Vaults

This video shows the inside of vaults that look like large refrigerated rooms with shelving various boxes and photographic collections on the shelves.

Presentation Transcript:
When film-based collections are large and require more than 150 cubic feet of space, the equivalent of about ten household freezers, consider the installation of a cold storage vault. The cost, energy consumption and space needed for so many freezers may make the vault a more efficient option. It may also be more cost-effective to purchase a vault if the collection is predicted to grow beyond a size that may require many freezers. (26 SEC)

Cold storage vaults are self-contained, refrigerated, pre-fabricated modular structures made from insulated metal panels . They can be purchased in standard sizes or they can be customized to fit your collection needs. Vaults can be maintained at temperatures slightly above freezing (35◦F) to accommodate access and reduce energy costs. Although vaults can be humidity-controlled, such a feature will significantly add to energy consumption. Opting for only passive humidity control is a good option; however, this will require the addition of cold storage packaging, as described in this program. A wide variety of storage furniture options, including simple wire racks, shelving on casters and compact shelving units, are available depending on your budget and the size of your collection. (51 SEC Loose)

Cold Storage Vaults

When are vaults an option for your collection?
  • collection takes up more than 150 cubic feet (10 household freezers)
  • collection is expected to grow beyond a size that can be stored in 10 household freezers

Continue to Cold Storage in Vaults: Smithsonian Vaults