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German broadcaster SWR selects Jordi’s ADAM-System for massive digital archive migration with Rohde & Schwarz

The German public service broadcaster Suedwestrundfunk (SWR) solves a massive tape archive digitization challenge by using the ADAM solution from the Swiss-based archiving specialist Jordi AG which includes encoding and storage products of Rohde & Schwarz.

Rohde & Schwarz has announced a major digital archive migration project with German regional broadcaster SWR. The project sees Rohde & Schwarz working closely with Swiss-based retro-archiving specialist Jordi AG.

SWR’s archiving challenge is massive: the broadcaster needs to archive over 40,000 tape hours of content each year. To alleviate its growing tape deterioration issues, the broadcaster took the strategic decision to digitize its entire tape-based archives. After careful evaluation of several vendors’ systems SWR settled on a migration system that combines Jordi’s automated digital migration system ADAM with Rohde & Schwarz’s VENICE video servers and R&S SpycerBox modular storage system running IBM Spectrum Scale.

ADAM is a fully automated, self-monitoring archive migration system which orchestrates all the workflow steps from tape insertion to content migration. R&S VENICE video servers encode all of the content into the final archive format and then R&S SpycerBox Cell and Ultra TL storage units are employed to perform all data buffering and transfer operations to SWR’s archive administration system.

The turnkey system is proving to be an ultra fast and totally reliable solution – more than 40 times faster than previous manual workflows. Such is the reliability of the system that it can run for 72 hours in lights out mode meaning that it can operate unattended throughout an entire weekend.

Six remote-controlled VTRs ingest content via a 4-channel R&S VENICE and another 2-channel R&S VENICE server which are FIMS-controlled from a Jordi AG controller. Media is recorded on to a single common R&S SpycerBox Cell SAS storage unit (27TB) and subsequently copied to another R&S SpycerBox Ultra TL unit which serves as a mid-term, non-realtime working buffer for the ingested clips. From there, the clips are made available to external LoRes creation engines and to external QC and reporting engines. The archive system backbone is created by a 40 GbE physical layer and IBM Spectrum Scale with NSD packets as a block-organized media exchange mechanism.

As part of the subsequent archiving process, LTO6 tapes are used as a long-term recording media. To maintain the required sustained data rate of 300 MB/s, ADAM uses a R&S SpycerBox Cell in combination with a R&S SpycerBox Ultra TL. These two storage systems are connected via 40 Gbit Ethernet, based on the IBM Spectrum Scale file system. The ultra fast R&S SpycerBox Cell storage system serves as a buffer memory and records the encoded files from R&S VENICE. This data is then transferred to a R&S SpycerBox Ultra TL which serves as a mid-term working buffer. The R&S SpycerBox Ultra TL guarantees a sustained data rate of at least 300 MB/s during the subsequent processes.

Frank Adam, Director Information, Documentation and Archive of SWR and SR: “At SWR, we have a massive tape archive migration project needing 40,000 hours of tape digitization each year. After extensive research, we found the optimum solution in ADAM by Jordi AG communication. The fully automatic and completely self-monitoring migration system combined with Rohde & Schwarz’s VENICE servers and R&S SpycerBox storage together with IBM Spectrum Scale is designed to migrate large tape libraries. Once the System is fully loaded with tapes the system runs autonomous over the weekend without any manual intervention.”

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