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Effect of Photographic Technology on Quality of Examination of Footwear Impressions

NCJ Number
Journal of Forensic Identification Volume: 57 Issue: 5 Dated: September/October 2007 Pages: 641-657
Herbert Blitzer; Richard Hammer; Jack Jacobia
Date Published
September 2007
17 pages

This study sought to determine how examiners of footwear impressions respond to images produced using different photographic chains.


Using a panel of footwear examiners and photographs produced by film and digital technologies, this study showed that properly chosen digital technology could give results comparable to those of 35mm silver halide. Prints produced from 120 film were better than either 35mm or digital. Individuals at the International Association for Identification (IAI) and the Scientific Working Group on Imaging Technology (SWGIT) meetings have raised questions regarding the level of photographic quality required by footwear impression examiners. Impression evidence examiners are concerned that the images they receive might lose important quality. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice, this project related photographic system parameters and objective image quality measures to the effectiveness of examiners. Tables, references and appendixes 1-2