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Treasure from 1200 years of Rhein history

State archive, Duisburg

The Duisburg harbour where grain was once stored is now part of the heritage of North Rhine Westfalia (NRW). The valuable documents of the state archive of NRW are secured with an access system supplied by DOM Sicherheitstechnik.

The 76-metre-high tower of the state archive is visible at a substantial distance. The gigantic building is one of Europe's most vintage buildings. Inside it is carefully sorted, important documents from the history of North-Rhine Westfalia. Some date back as far as the ninth century. The new building which was completed in 2013 was inspired by the previous storage silo from 1936 with its brick structure. The massive exterior which has no windows is structured according to its function: After all, a large number of documents have to be protected against harmful environmental influences, daylight and excessive humidity.

This makes the adjacent administrative building even more impressive with its wave shape. "Just as the building is very varied on the outside, the requirements for the security system on the inside are just as diverse", says Carsten Wehefritz, manager of the Technology & Sales Division at Schmidt + Meldau. The company which specialises in security technology designed and installed the security system based on the DOM technology.

Good Memory

In addition to the administration premises of the state archive, other companies are housed in the "wave". Which ones had not been decided when the system was installed. "We have to choose a system which can react in a flexible way", says Wehefritz. In the initial fitting 900 mechanical DOM products of the RS Sigma range were installed. Electronic access control is used in the administration premises and archive area of the state archive which has approximately 125 kilometres of shelf space on 22 floors in the tower and the basement of the wave. 160 DOM protectors as well as 20 DOM Access Managers secure the inner door there, the exterior of the building and the entrance to the underground garage in the adjacent building. Wehefritz: "In addition to flexible management of the access-enabled transponders, the totally reliable protection against unauthorised entry was a decisive factor." Furthermore, DOM's electronic systems – as was the case in the state archive – can be linked with time-recording systems and they allow quick and cost-effective management of access authorisations for individual part areas.

In principle, the archive is open to every citizen. People can carry out research here concerning matters relating to families, places and local history. Approximately 60 to 100 private and scientific researchers use the facility in the state archive every day. With the current increase in document quantities the operators expect current capacities to be sufficient for almost another forty years. "If an extension is necessary one day, the security system is sufficiently innovative to respond to the situation", says Wehefritz.