KIT library

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KIT library
KIT library Phi1free.jpg

Location south with new building on the left (main entrance)
and old building on the right

founding 1840
Duration over 2.4 million media units
Library type University library
place Karlsruhe
Visitor address Str. Am Forum 2, 76131 Karlsruhe
(location south)
management Arne Upmeier
Website KIT library website

The KIT library is the central library of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) . It was created at the end of 2009 as a result of the merger of the former University of Karlsruhe and the Karlsruhe Research Center. The two central libraries at Campus North and Campus South, together with a network of decentralized branch libraries, ensure the information supply for research and teaching of around 24,000 students and 9,000 scientists at KIT. In addition, the KIT library at the Moltkestrasse location supplies 7,000 students and 600 scientists at the Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences - Technology and Business . In addition to the primary task of supplying literature and information to the KIT, the library is also an important information service provider for interested citizens in the information infrastructure of the Karlsruhe technology region .

Holdings and use

The total inventory of the library at the respective locations amounts to over two million books and 28,000 magazines, as well as multimedia documents and microforms. Most of the media are freely accessible and systematically organized . Registered users can use the KIT Library South around the clock ( 24-hour library) and borrow and return books via a self-booking system; the KIT Library North offers its services exclusively on weekdays. The KIT Library South has frequently used textbooks in a collection of multiple copies (textbook collection); 600,000 research reports form a main focus of the KIT Library North.

The library offers the following subject areas: architecture and construction, mathematics, physics and chemistry, computer science, natural and engineering sciences, economics and social sciences, as well as the areas of energy and the environment, materials research, nuclear technology, microsystem technology and nanotechnology.

The KIT library offers a total of over 1,300 workplaces, 1,000 of them in the KIT library south. The workstations in the 24-hour library, which are equipped with wired and wireless networks, are intended to guarantee visitors modern learning and working opportunities. A book delivery service was set up between the central libraries and the specialist library at the Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences in order to achieve quick availability of books at the various locations.

The central libraries

KIT Library South

(formerly Karlsruhe University Library)

Essential services can be used around the clock since April 2006 (opening of the 24-hour library). The systematic presentation of the current literature (books and magazines) in four subject areas ( "specialist reading rooms") marks the transition from the magazine to the lending library . With the gradual integration of numerous decentralized specialist libraries, the previously two-tier library system is being transformed into a one -tier system .

The history: The KIT Library South was founded in 1840 as the library of the then Polytechnic ; In 1854 it was given its own premises in a wing of the main building. During the Second World War, 60% of the holdings of 200,000 volumes were destroyed. In 1966 the university library moved into the “book tower” on the street at the forum, which is now a listed building. With the opening of the extension, which was completed in 2006, 24-hour operation began.

KIT Library North

The KIT Library North

(Formerly the central library of the library and media department of the Karlsruhe Research Center)

As a specialized scientific library, the library is primarily intended to provide scientists with specialist literature in printed and electronic form. In addition to the central offer, the library looks after around 40 institute and departmental libraries on site.

About the history: The library was founded in 1956 as the literature department (LA) of the Kernreaktor Bau- und Betriebsgesellschaft mbH in Karlstrasse in Karlsruhe, where it remained until 1959. From 1959 to 1962 it was integrated into the Institute for Neutron Physics and Reactor Technology (INR) on the site of the Karlsruhe Nuclear Research Center - today's KIT Campus North - before moving into a separate building on the site in 1964 after a transition period in a “fire brigade barracks” of the Karlsruhe Nuclear Research Center, where it is still located today.

Digital library

The central inventory record for media of all kinds is the KIT catalog. The indexing of the content of newly acquired media according to uniform principles, as well as differentiated research options are intended to ensure quick access to the media. In addition, the KIT library operates further catalogs, some with regional portal character (Karlsruhe library portal) or international catalog (Karlsruhe Virtual Catalog (KVK) ).

Literature that is not available in Karlsruhe can be obtained via interlibrary loan for a fee.

The library provides KIT scientists and students with access to numerous licensed and free specialist databases (bibliographical, factual and full-text databases) as well as full texts of digital books (e-books), digital journals (e-journals), online lectures and audiovisuals Materials. Library users have access to their library account via the Internet and can carry out essential functions (renewal, reserve, retrieve account statements, etc.) themselves.

Media services and collections

The digital video and audio archive DIVA is the central platform for multimedia teaching and learning materials of the KIT on the Internet. It primarily contains videos and audio contributions from our own production and offers an audiovisual news mirror in the form of film and radio contributions about KIT. Images for research and teaching are listed and offered centrally in the digital image database PIA (Picture Archive). The film archive of the KIT library provides feature films and documentaries on DVD and video cassettes for scientific needs. The media center supports employees and students with audio-video productions. It rents out professional equipment and offers media workstations and training courses on film design.

Publication services

KITopen is the central repository of KIT. It is a publication platform for all KIT researchers and guarantees the long-term archiving and authenticity of the documents submitted. KIT members can publish their doctoral theses and research results free of charge via KITopen. All documents are made freely accessible on the Internet ( Open Access ).

The science publisher KIT Scientific Publishing (formerly Universitätsverlag Karlsruhe) is the central point of contact for publications for all those working in science at KIT. Specialist books, series of publications and research reports may be printed in small editions on demand and distributed via local and internet bookshops and are also freely available on the internet via Open Access .

KIT is one of the first research institutions in Germany to set up a publication fund with the help of the German Research Foundation, from which open access article fees are financed. The new funding program "Open Access Publishing" offers financial support for alternative, quality-assured review and publication processes.

Advice and training

Employees are available at information desks to provide specialist information; Specialist speakers can be called in for special information. At the beginning of the semester and every month there are introductions to the use of the library; Group tours are available on request.

Events for literature searches in specialist databases and training courses for researching the KIT catalog take place regularly. In addition, the library provides seminars on special topics from information and library systems (e.g. Open Access).

The KIT Library puts her attention on raising the public relations: This includes the maintenance and the expansion of the website, the dissemination of timely news about RSS - Web Feeds , providing printed leaflets and audiovisual information materials and publishing press releases.

IT at the KIT library

The KIT Library South attaches great importance to the development and use of modern IT applications for the automation and optimization of work processes.

  • In 1970, what was then the university library began to centrally record all university book collections using the Flexowriter punched tape system .
  • In 1984 automatic loan booking (OLAF) was introduced.
  • In 1986, ongoing cataloging began in the Südwestverbund (SWB), which is why the alphabetical catalog was changed from PI to RAK-WB .
  • From 1995 to 1996 the Karlsruhe Virtual Catalog (KVK) was developed at the then university library, which enables simultaneous online access to catalog systems worldwide. Further catalogs were created on the same software basis.
  • The self-developed information system i3v has been in use since 1996, which forms the basis for a cross-business IT solution.
  • 2004: Introduction of a recommendation service
  • 2005: Development of the XOPAC online catalog based on search engine technology
  • 2006: All media and the user cards of the former university library are equipped with radio tags ( RFID chips ). In combination with a book security system, this enables self-service books to be borrowed and returned 24 hours a day, which has led to a sharp increase in the number of users.
  • 2006: Introduction of RSS - message service in the OPAC .
  • 2009: Commissioning of the world's first collection machine for interlibrary loan media in a library. Spin-off of the company BibTip (provider of recommendation services for library catalogs).
  • 2011: Publication database of the Helmholtz Association for scientific publications based on OAI-PMH
  • 2012: Commissioning of the KIT Catalog Plus , a comprehensive literature search engine that, in addition to books and other media, also lists articles and conference contributions as well as digital books and often refers directly to the full texts.
  • 2013: Commissioning of the online guide to free learning and workplaces (Seatfinder) , an up-to-date overview of free learning and workplaces in the libraries of KIT, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences and TheaBib (in the bath. Karlsruhe State Theater).
  • 2013: Introduction of the service for the international listing of research data repositories .
  • 2015: KITopen publication lists for creating and integrating publication lists on the websites of researchers, working groups and institutes.
  • 2017: Extension of KITopen to include the possibility of publishing research data.


  • Frank Scholze, Regine Tobias (Ed.): 24 hours are a library. Learn. To research. Cooperate. The innovative library . 2nd Edition. KIT Scientific Publishing, Karlsruhe 2013, ISBN 978-3-7315-0010-0 ( online [PDF; 3.1 MB ; accessed on July 22, 2015]).
  • Frank Scholze (Ed.): Innovation from Tradition. 175 Years of the KIT Library . KIT Scientific Publishing, Karlsruhe 2015, ISBN 978-3-7315-0439-9 ( online [PDF; 19.4 MB ; accessed on June 10, 2016]).

Web links


  1. Library in Numbers KIT Library (accessed on April 23, 2020)
  2. The KIT - data and facts. (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on July 26, 2010 ; Retrieved May 1, 2012 .
  3. a b c d KIT Library About Us - Library Profile. (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on March 16, 2012 ; Retrieved May 2, 2012 .
  4. Hochschule Karlsruhe - Technik und Wirtschaft (HsKA) - Campus in numbers. Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences , accessed on May 4, 2012 .
  5. The new 24-hour library of the University of Karlsruhe ( Memento from August 18, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Press release from the company Bibliotheca RFID Library Systems AG as a PDF file (approx. 300 kB)

Coordinates: 49 ° 0 ′ 39.8 ″  N , 8 ° 24 ′ 58.9 ″  E