Assume following plot in Mathematica (version 11.2):

  Exp[-x] Sin[10 x],
  Exp[-3 x] Sin[25 x]
 {x, 0, 5},
 PlotRange -> All,
 AxesStyle -> Directive[Black, 12],
 PlotLegends -> Placed[{"1", "2"}, {0.7, 0.7}]

This produces the following output:

example plot

I want to include this image in my document, which is required to be PDF/A valid (document's source is in LaTeX and I have no problem producing a valid PDF/A valid document without the image from Mathematica) and the images (included via the LaTeX includegraphics command) are recommended to be in the pdf format.

To include it in the document, I export the plot via context menu Save graphics as ... -> choose PDF extension, or via the Export command

Export["plot.pdf", %]

However, the final PDF document can be PDF/A valid only if its source is PDF/A valid as well as all included pdf images. Is it possible to export the plot from Mathematica as pdf so it is PDF/A-2U valid? The exported pdf with default settings is not pdf/a valid, e.g. the validator veraPDF outputs the following errors:


Including not PDF/A file into the main document ruins the PDF/A validity of the whole document.

Or is it possible to change Plot options - i.e. change fonts, colors, so the Export command will produce pdf/a valid image?

What am I missing? Or perhaps is there an easier way? Thank you for any advice.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ It might be easier to convert the PDF to a compliant one using other tools. PDF24 for example seems to be able to save the PDF from Mathematica as PDF/A-1b compliant, without breaking anything. However, I haven't got this to work for PDF/A-2U yet $\endgroup$ – Lukas Lang Dec 30 '18 at 11:06

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