In 1982, the Defense Mapping Agency was tasked with developing an all-digital production system capable of meeting the armed forces’ evolving demands for critical mapping, charting, and geodesy (MC&G) support.
Under the leadership of U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Edward A. Wilkinson Jr., DMA director between 1983 and 1985, the agency implemented the Digital Production System, an ambitious modernization program which sought to redesign and retool its MC&G production systems and processes. During Wilkinson’s tenure, DMA – a heritage organization of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency – implemented Phase I (Mark 85) of the program on time and in budget.
Mark 85 improved and enhanced hardcopy production methods, improved production management and database management, and provided an initial softcopy production capability. Mark 85 capability allowed DMA to continue to produce critical geographic products to U.S. military forces from new digital national reconnaissance imagery.