The Department of Defense's central repository for visual images will undertake a massive archival preservation project in 2014, the agency announced in a recent statement. The Defense Imagery Management Operations Center recently received $5 million to preserve hundreds of thousands of historical images, with the ultimate goal of enhancing its digital archive.
The DIMOC archives military images for not only the Defense Department, but also for other federal agencies and the public. The images are often found in obscure places, such as closed bases or deserted warehouses. Once the physical images are digitized, they can be viewed online. The photos available for viewing were taken by members acting on the behalf of the DOD, according to Defense Imagery website.
However, it's not only photographic prints that the archival center is working to preserve, but also negatives, film slides and videotapes.
"That material is deteriorating faster than we can offer it to the National Archives and we need to get it into a digital form," said DIMOC director Mike Edrington.
According to the DOD, one reason why the DIMOC is taking on this massive archival process is because its climate-controlled storage space at the March Air Base in Riverside, Calif., is quickly filling up.