This International Standard specifies the procedure for the photographic activity and dye coupler reactivity tests.
This International Standard is applicable to general photographic enclosure materials such as paper, tissue, cardboard, mat board and plastics. It is also applicable to components of photographic enclosure materials such as adhesives, inks, paints, labels, and tape.
This International Standard evaluates possible chemical interactions between enclosures with processed silver-gelatin, colour (dye-gelatin), inkjet prints made with dye-based and pigment-based inks, thermal dye diffusion transfer (“dye sub”) prints, digitally printed dye-diffusion-transfer prints, liquid- and dry-toner xerographic prints, liquid-toner electrostatic prints, and diazo images after long-term storage. It does not pertain to harmful physical interactions such as blocking (sticking together), dye bleed, adhesive migration, or plasticizer exudation. It does not pertain to important criteria of enclosures such as their inherent chemical stability, physical integrity, and workmanship. Passing the photographic activity test (PAT) does not indicate that a material is archival. This term has no clear definition and is not used in this standard. Photo-safe, storage enclosures and their components are covered in ISO 18902, which includes passing the criteria of the photographic activity test.
If a particular brand of commercially made enclosure materials is found to be safe for long-term storage purposes, there is no assurance that subsequent batches will contain the same ingredients of the same purity, chemical inertness, concentrations, or sound and sturdy construction. For this reason, materials are tested annually or upon each formulation or supplier change. For materials which are manufactured in a variety of colours, such as papers and inks, each colour is evaluated and reported separately.