CERN pilots Piql technology

CERN, known as the European Laboratory for Particle Physics is the leading institution in the world for research of particle physics, was established as a European initiative in 1954. The institution collects a wide range of data for multiple research areas and share the knowledge to scientists and other research institutions around the world.


The CERN Digital Memory project was established to ensure that the observations and documentation that has been collected over the decades would not be at risk of potential loss. The purpose of the project was to ensure a holistic approach to long-term preservation to ensure future access to important historical and research content.


With the rich history of CERN and a curious interest in a new approach for long-term archiving and data storage, CERN chose to conduct a preservation project to store some of their most valuable content wit Piql’s unique and innovative technology.

Supported by the European Union and Horizon 2020 through the piqlFilm-Go project, this initial project focused on a snapshot of highlights from the Digital Memory project. CERN selected 320 GB of its most valuable data from the historical archive and digitally preserved it on the unique, migration free, and very long-term storage medium piqlFilm.

This snapshot consisted of important datasets, including open data of high energy physics (HEP), stored in a custom CERN HEP format. The preservation of this data will be highly valuable to future researchers when comparing datasets and knowledge from different centuries.

In addition, CERN preserved an important collection of photographs in preservation formats (along with file format specifications) and historical movies.

The information was stored in a digital format on the piqlFilm, ensuring data integrity and authenticity on the write-once-read-many (WORM) storage medium.

The preservation of this content will therefore ensure that the story of CERN continues to live on into the very distant future with this selection of its Digital Memory kept and protected forever.

An additional and important outcome from the project, has been the collaboration resulting in a strong exchange of competence and expertise on long-term preservation among two respected organisations in the domain of archiving.

Piql looks forward to a fruitful future of collaboration with CERN.