11th ICMG Abstracts

Session I

International Secuity: Boards to Natural Resources (Chair: Chris Gellasch)

U.S. Army “Resource Development Teams”: a need for improving future counterinsurgency efforts in developing nations

Alexander K. Stewart 1 and John F. Shroder 2,
1 - Department of Geology, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY 13617 USA, 2 - Department of Geography and Geology, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE 68182,

In the past 40 years, 30 counterinsurgency (COIN) operations have been resolved. These operations covered a variety of geographic and cultural aspects with one commonality—depressed economies with limited infrastructure and a weak/nonexistent government. Afghanistan, for example, has undergone four COIN efforts in the past 40 years, three of which were failures. Recent evaluation of the U.S. and coalition effort up to 2011 was rated marginally “positive” (Paul, 2011). Of the 15 “good” practices recommended for a successful operation, four can be supported by geoscientists: 1) infrastructure development; 2) provision of basic services; 3) establishment of positive relationships with the population; and 4) providing evidence to develop support for COIN operations. Soldier-geoscientists in the U.S. Army Agriculture Development Teams (ADT, 2008-2014) helped support these four practices. These small, specialized teams relied on their geoscientists to undertake non-agriculture-related projects to support the agricultural mission. Teams worked as partners in the communities and developed relationships on a daily basis, which helped prove the value of the COIN force. ADT geoscientists, however, worked in the physical environment with limited opportunity to work with the physical environment. ADTs and their civil-military counterparts in the Provincial Reconstruction Teams leave a conceivable need for the implementation of “Resource Development Teams” (RDT), which could help in the development of geological, hydrological, ecological and environmental resources and needs with “reach-back” support by associated agencies and land-grant universities.

These RDT teams would be small, specialized, egalitarian U.S. Army teams staffed by volunteer National Guard soldiers who are civilian workers in these fields: physical sciences, engineering, economy and resource-development. These soldier-experts would work in strategic locations, building resource capabilities and knowledge with the local communities. For autonomy, these teams would mirror the ADT structure and would be led by a colonel with the appropriate staff and security, which would provide full access to both equipment and to maneuverability in their area of operations. The need for these RDTs is manifold, but on the most strategic level, they could provide an understanding of a country’s resources in a dangerous environment where civilian government and non-governmental organizations cannot or will not work. Some examples of RDT project sectors could be water-, mineral-, ecological-, and environmental-resources. Within these sectors, geoscientists would be able to not only provide instrumental support to maintaining or refurbishing existing infrastructure, but could also begin developing the knowledge necessary to start larger projects through educational efforts and cataloging/preserving/developing baseline environmental data (e.g., streamflow, geological/ecological maps). These new or continued baseline data are critical to providing the context necessary for longer term resource planning. RDT efforts would support COIN efforts by helping prepare a developing country to stand on its own economic feet when the inevitable withdrawal of support occurs. A combination of education and technical support and sustainable, resource-development planning and projects can help stabilize a government’s economy.

Forensic Geology – The Application of Geochemical Techniques to Materials Provenance Problems

Sorcha DiskinGeology Cell, 66 Works Group, Royal Engineers, Chetwynd Barracks, Chilwell, Nottingham, NG9 5HA

Forensic geology is the application of many different geoscience-based methods in the investigation of archaeological problems as well as the international and national crimes of genocide and pollution, terrorism, together with domestic crime as well as accident investigation. Forensic geology can be considered a subset of the wider field of forensic geosciences and is principally concerned with studies of rocks, sediments, minerals and soils. Sediment provenance analysis using geochemical and mineralogical methods is not without hazard and in many cases can lead nowhere, however with some care very useful palaeoenvironmental information may be revealed. Recently, the applications sediment source provenancing to archaeological materials has proved very successful (Diskin and Ashley, under review). In that case, the materials used to make pottery by a group of Tswana immigrants to the Khwebe Hills of Northern Botswana were traced. By comparison with other archaeological data, inferences could be made about the comparatively peaceful settlement of this Tswana polity in an area already inhabited by San peoples. Further to this, there has been great progress in recent years in fingerprinting minerals in Africa, in particular diamonds and Coltan (Columbite-tantalite). Conflict diamonds have acquired some renown through campaigns to ensure traceability from origin to consumer and many are now familiar with the term ‘Blood Diamond’. It remains comparatively easy in conflict areas to infiltrate the certification system and so other methods are required to aid the process. Diamonds are difficult to analyse forensically due their chemical structure which doesn’t readily accept other elements, however, some nitrogen and other trace elements can be found. There is currently an initiative to build a database of diamond characteristics in the SADC countries in an effort to characterise diamonds so that they can be related to a particular mine, thus making it more difficult to circumvent the certification protocol. Similarly, Coltan is also a conflict mineral, which has also fuelled armed conflicts and civil war in many African countries. The UNSC recommended the development of a traceability system to prove the origin of Coltan before it could be traded. A number of pilot projects have had some success in characterising the trace element chemistry of some mines, particularly in DRC and Burundi. In this paper case studies are shown to present how the forensic geologist can determine sources of a range of materials.

Megacities and U.S. National Security

Approved for Public Release 15-140 -- Douglas Batson, Office of Geography, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, 7500 GEOINT Drive, N62SG, Springfield, VA 22150 USA

With 200K people DAILY migrating from rural to urban areas, megacities are the geographic phenomena of the 21st century. Rapid urbanization, concentrated in coastal cities of the Global South, will increase the number of slum dwellers from the current 1 billion to 2 billion people by 2030, and perhaps to 3 billion by 2050. While more than half the world's population is urban, U.S. Intelligence Community analytical portfolios are focused on countries and regions, not cities. In many cases, megacity growth outstrips the ability of local government to enforce rule of law and provide basic water and sanitation services. As a consequence, densely populated urban areas can become spawning grounds for mass public resentment, criminal activity, and political radicalization, which is a national security concern.

Lagos, Nigeria, the West African megacity home to 20 million people, has experienced livelihood and infrastructure improvements for some residents, but not the estimated 12 million inhabitants of peri-urban informal settlements unserved by formal infrastructure and public services. A man-made or natural disaster striking a megacity like Lagos could destabilize an entire region and create a scenario in which non-governmental actors and institutions assume governance roles over millions of at risk people.

Thus, a disaster occurring in Lagos, Nigeria, where more than half of an estimated 20 million people live in alternately-governed slums would present an unprecedented challenge to humanitarian assistance and disaster response (HADR) operations. Lagosian stakeholders: government, businesses, and civil society are developing an understanding that Lagos’ recent infrastructure and livelihood improvements require improvements in their resilience and protection.

This study suggests that international actors must leverage informal governance and security entities in order to achieve successful HADR operations in megacities.

This first look preliminary assessment of Lagos’ disaster management challenges bridges a strategic knowledge gap. For a megacity disaster scenario which lacks a robust host nation government presence, this study attempted to identify Lagosian civil society actors whose assistance could contribute to HADR mission success. It cautions operators, who might be tempted to work exclusively with small and responsive non-governmental organizations (NGOs) rather than larger and perhaps corruption-prone and less amenable sectors of Nigerian civil society. Given the changes to Lagos’ administrative structure, this study examined challenges within the de facto second-order administrative divisions that constitute what has become the third largest city in the world.

A promising starting point for improved cooperation between government and civil society is to enable those in unplanned an unregulated housing to map their own communities. This study has shown the way forward by partnering with academia to produce hazard and administrative maps for Lagos at meaningful scales.

Session II

Terrain and Military Activities (Chair: Drew Craig)

Terrain Types and Military Operations in Developing Regions: A Model for Professional Applications

Jason E. Strakes - Division of Political Science, Mark O. Hatfield School of Government, Portland State University, 7055 SW 103rd Ave, Beaverton, OR, 97008

Contemporary doctrinal assumptions regarding the impact of natural and physical features on the conduct of armed conflict originated largely from Northwest European historical settings. The classical strategic studies literature makes several conclusions regarding the role of topography in war. Clausewitz asserts that terrain exerts three primary influences on the conduct of military operations: as an obstacle to troop movement, as an impediment to visibility, and as cover and concealment from detection or enemy fire. However, these effects are not monocausal, as different types of terrain interact with these factors in varying ways. As a result, modern-day scholars of military strategy and tactics have asserted that the significant degree of variation within categories of terrain, their interaction with variables such as climate and seasonal weather conditions, and the highly differentiated geography of many Third World states demands that topographic effects be examined in the context of a particular military engagement or operation.

Yet, in recent years topographic and climatic variables have been incorporated into large-N data analyses of the outbreak, outcome and duration of international conflicts, the effect of terrain and distance in Third World interstate wars, and the role of political geography in civil wars. These approaches suggest possibilities for the closer integration of military geology and geography with broader inquiries in the fields of political science and international studies. An additional basis for broadening the scope of the subfield has been presented by Palka and Galgano, whom introduce an expanded concept of the impact of geographic and geologic conditions on military operations. This extension proceeds from the fact that historically, military forces have been mobilized far more frequently in civil defense (humanitarian aid, disaster relief and evacuation) and peacekeeping (stability and support) capacities than in actual warfare scenarios. Such policy realities also suggest logical compatibility with the general finding in empirical conflict studies that major high-casualty conventional wars are actually rarely occurring events, particularly in the developing world, while limited military deployments or lower-intensity incidents are relatively commonplace. In addition, contemporary contributions to operations research suggest that the effective use of natural features in limiting the exposure of forward troops to enemy observation and fire is an essential element of the modern system of force employment and battlefield success. This study seeks to construct a systematic methodology for analyzing forest, mountain and desert terrain, climatic conditions, and militarized disputes in the context of geographic regions (Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East) in which contemporary forms of conflict are most likely to emerge. This is intended to better link the research agenda in geography of conflict with battlefield operational planning in the professional military arena. It utilizes statistical tests of a theoretical model in order to evaluate the impact of terrain and climatic variables on 1), the likelihood that armed forces will pursue the offense or defense in a given militarized dispute, 2), the probable level of hostility that is reached, and 3), the probable outcome of a given operation.

Research Proposal — Analyzing the Past and Current Roles of Terrain and Terrain Analysis on Military Operations

Department of Maritime Civilizations, School of Marine Studies and the Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies (RIMS), University of Haifa, Mt. Carmel Haifa, 31905 Israel. - School of Sciences, Achva Academic College, M.P. Shikmim 7980400, Israel

For centuries terrain has been accepted to have a powerful impact on offensive and defensive military activity. With the growing influence of technology and changes in the character of engagements, such as cyber warfare, precise-targeting, low-intensity conflicts, and counterinsurgency, many decision makers and commanders believe that the relative importance of terrain and military geosciences on current and future warfare has declined. The proposed study will evaluate the past and present impact of terrain on battles. I hypothesize that in this millennium, terrain often plays a crucial role in many types and scales of modern combat. Technological applications can in fact offer enhanced, higher resolution and push-button terrain analysis, but these often have to be inputted and used by experienced military geoscientists.

The case study focuses on the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Since its foundation in 1948, the State of Israel has fought in several wars and conducted many operations against the surrounding Arab nations and entities. These have been waged in different geographic settings. This is owed to the considerable variance in Israel's climate, physiography, and border terrain—lying between the Mediterranean Sea and Sinai Peninsula to the west and the Syrian African Rift to the east, and between Mediterranean climate zones in the north and the arid and hyperarid zones in the south. Although terrain is often an influential factor in many IDF operations, the impact of terrain characteristics and the quality of terrain analysis (which has often been patchy), have not been sufficiently studied.

As part of some preliminary finds, battles in which different terrains have had powerful, significant though different positive and negative impacts on the battle results are demonstrated. These include the “Burma” Road bypass in the Judean Hills (1948), the offensive through the northern Sinai Haradin linear interdunes (1967), the Karameh Operation in the irrigated soils of the Jordan Valley (1968), the Egyptian and Israeli Suez Canal crossings (1973), Operation Peace for Galilee in the southern Lebanese mountains (1982), and the underground activities and counter-warfare in the Gaza Strip region since 2000.

U.S. Army “Resource Development Teams”: a need for improving future counterinsurgency efforts in developing nations

S. Shoop, E. Ochs, A. Sopher, C. Ryerson, - US Army, ERDC-CRREL, 72 Lyme Rd, Hanover, NH 03755 USA.

The modern American military relies on its ability to rapidly deploy and engage in remote and often undeveloped regions of the world, whether for humanitarian or military purposes. Forward combat units require an improved method to remotely assess austere entry locations and identify landing zones and drop zones (LZ-DZ) to meet expedient entry as well as agile logistics and sustainment requirements in any operational environment. Ground observations are usually required to locate and confirm that soil engineering properties and topography meet criteria for landing and delivery. In addition, there is no direct method of linking site selection with real-time weather data that could affect access.

In order to meet these requirements, improve the assessment of entry locations, and reduce the need for boots on the ground, CRREL is developing methods to obtain the required terrain and soils information from exiting geospatial and remotely sensed data, and to automate the down-select process. Algorithms using terrain and land cover analysis rapidly identify flat, low relief, low vegetation, and large enough areas from globally available geospatial datasets. Remotely sensed data is then used for stand off sensing of soil physical properties and machine learning for potential obstacles. Algorithms for predicting soil strength based on satellite images are also in development. Ultimately, the geospatial locations required for insuring safe entry and delivery will then be combined with local predicted or real-time weather information, including temperature, precipitation and wind effects on the terrain and mission.

The CRREL program involves several work phases: 1) geospatial data acquisition (land classification, soil type, imagery, elevation, etc.), 2) geometry analysis for the size of the landing or drop zone needed, 3) create filters to rule out unsuitable areas using datasets available, 4) algorithm generation, refinement and validation, 5) user interface and automation, and 6) incorporating risk. Each phase is discussed and illustrated using a field experimental program.

The remote assessment GIS toolsets are being designed to be easily transitioned to geospatial DoD programs such as USAF Land Information Systems (LIS), the weather modeling software component within the USAF Numerical Weather Modeling program of record (USAF Life Cycle Management Center (LCMC) Hanscom AFB); and the Army Situational Awareness Geospatially Enabled (SAGE) tool supporting the Distributed Common Ground System-Army (DCGS-A).

Session III

Military History 1 (Chair: Stephen W. Henderson)

The Battle of Waterloo: Some Geological Reflections to Mark the Bicentenary

Edward P. F. Rose - Honorary Research Fellow, Department of Earth Sciences, Royal Holloway, University of London, Egham, Surrey TW20 0EX, UK

The bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo, of 18th June 1815 and one of the great battles in world history, falls within the timeframe of the 11th International Conference on Military Geosciences—so reflection on some of its geological aspects is particularly apposite. The Battle was fought about 15 km south of Brussels in Belgium, between the forces of the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte and a coalition army of British, German, Dutch and Belgian troops led by the British Duke of Wellington, joined later in the day by a Prussian army led by Gebhard von Blücher, Prince of Wahlstatt. The Battle ended some 23 years of intermittent warfare that had raged at times across much of Europe—and parts of the Mediterranean region, India and North America—and initiated a period of relative peace and stability in Europe that was to last for nearly a century. Although none of the commanders made use of geology or geologists for the Battle, Napoleon had made use of geologists as such on campaign in 1798, Blücher had used a professor of geology as one of his staff officers on campaign in 1814, and Wellington was later to preside over the military Board of Ordnance that funded government geological mapping in Scotland until 1826—and that initiated military geological mapping in Ireland in 1826. However, gently undulating topography was an important feature of the Waterloo battlefield, and that is a consequence of the underlying geology: a sequence of largely unconsolidated sub-horizontal Eocene sands and clays, eroded by river systems, and with a variable cover of Quaternary loess. Very high rainfall preceding the Battle has been controversially linked with a geological cause: the catastrophic volcanic eruption of Tambora in Indonesia that had taken place early in April 1815, although it was not until the following so-called ‘year without a summer’ that the eruption’s climatic consequences were to be most widely felt. The effect of high rainfall on clay-rich soil was to generate ‘going’ strongly influenced by mud. This slowed movement by infantry and cavalry, and reduced the effectiveness of artillery—in which Napoleon’s army had superiority. Coalition victory in the Battle led soon to abdication and exile of Napoleon, and subsequent troop reductions to peace-time levels freed several former military men to devote their energies to pioneering significant advances in geology. Amongst Waterloo veterans, Captain J. W. Pringle became founding superintendent of the Geological Survey of Ireland, Lieutenant W. Lonsdale co-founded the Devonian System now recognised globally within the stratigraphic record, and the French General Simon Bernard became a Brigadier-General in the USA, guiding the development of fortifications and waterways. Captain R. I. Murchison was thwarted in his efforts to participate in the campaign, but later made a career in geology, founding the Silurian and Permian Systems and co-founding the Devonian, and becoming the second Director of the Geological Survey of Great Britain and Ireland. Indirectly, the Battle of Waterloo left a geological legacy that has endured to this day.

The U.S. Army Camel Corps: An Experiment in Transportation Solutions

William J. Heidner - Museum Curator, U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground, 301 C Street, Yuma, AZ 85365

The Camel Corps is a misnomer referring to the experiment to determine the suitability of camels for “military purposes”. This paper explores the program for what it really was; a very short chapter in the history of America. It is as much a story of our Nation’s expansion as it is about the usefulness of camels to the Army. In today’s terms, it would be called a rapid fielding initiative involving a commercial off-the-shelf product. Did it work? Legends abound.

Interest in Camels for the Army began about 1836 with a study by Mr. E.F. Miller. Major Henry Wayne’s 1848 letter attracted the attention of Senator Jefferson Davis. Davis introduced legislation for the purchase of camels but the bill failed to pass. In 1853 Davis became the Secretary of War. Congress appropriates $30,000.00 for the Camel Experiment. Major Wayne and Lt David M. Porter, USN, prepare the USS Supply to go to “the Levant” to acquire camels. Gwinn Harris Heap, former Consul to Tunis, went ahead to pave the way to purchase Thirty-three (33) camels. The Camels landed at Indianola Texas, May 1856 and then moved to Camp Verde TX.

In March of 1857 Secretary of War Davis was replaced by John B. Floyd. Floyd favored the experiment and contracted with Ed Beale, former Lieutenant, USN, and noted traveler, to build a wagon road along the 35th Parallel. This mission would be the perfect test bed for the Camels. The Camels were brought from Camp Verde to San Antonio. When the camels arrived, May Humphreys Stacy, a family friend of Beale’s, was moved to exclaim; “What are these camels the representation of? Not a high civilization exactly, but the ‘go-ahead-ness of the American character’.”

Beale was impressed with the camels. “My admiration increases daily with my experience … on bitter greasewood not only subsist but keep fat…” At the end of Beale’s first foray Secretary Floyd wrote that “The entire adaptation of camels in Military operations may now be taken as demonstrated”. Major Henry Wayne, commented that; “It is gratifying to know that our experiment is sustained by actual use and practical demonstration…”

Of the more than 70 camels imported by the Army, Beale would only take 25 of them for his survey mission. The remainder stayed at Camp Verde. Occasionally those camels would be taken out and used to explore Texas. During the second survey of the Big Bend area, Lt Echols reported that; “The camels have performed most admirably to-day. No such march as this could be made without them.”

The Civil War changed everything. Former Secretary of War Jefferson Davis would become the President of the CSA. Floyd would become a General Officer in the Confederate Army. Ed Beale would get richer in California. In 1863 the Army auctioned off the California Camels. The Texas Camels were sold off following the War. There have been many excuses for the failure of the camels. Most of them miss the point. This paper will help set the record straight.

The Navies of the Century of Peace (1815-1914): Major Power Navies in a Century of Rapid Technological Change

Kurt Schroeder - Professor of Geography and Environmental Planning, Department of Social Science, Plymouth State University, MSC 39, 17 High Street, Plymouth NH 03264

The major navies of the nineteenth century existed during an era of massive technological change. Ocean-going ship propulsion evolved from sail to steam, and steam propulsion evolved from simple boiler technology to triple-expansion and turbine propulsion. Steam-driven energy was conveyed to the water first by paddle-wheel, then by screw. Armaments evolved from round shot and round shell to cylindro-conoidal explosive shells, and the armor to defeat these shells evolved from wood to iron-clad to treated steel. This paper examines the geography of these changes, and how this changing technology recreated the geography of land and ocean.

Session IV

Military Geoscience and Applications 1 (Chair: Peter Guth)

Strategic Geospheric Engineering

Maj Drew. G. Craig - Geology Cell, 66 Works Group, Royal Engineers, Chetwynd Barracks, Chilwell, Nottingham, NG9 5HA, UK

As Earth’s resources dwindle there is growing evidence to demonstrate that nations are actively utilizing geospheric engineering within their long term strategies. Geospheric encompasses a variety of direct and indirect activities which lead to the physical alteration of the geosphere. The geosphere in turn is defined as the collective name for the lithosphere, the hydrosphere, the cryosphere, and the atmosphere (Wiki).

Atmospheric engineering is acknowledged to have been a growing phenomenon since the start of the Anthropogene. We see this globally at present as Climate Change but more localized incidences have occurred since the 1940’s when ‘cloud seeding’ was first documented. Indeed a USAF paper from 1996, actively discusses “owning the weather [by] 2025”.

Cryospheric engineering is now being actively pursued by several organizations moving to counter the impact of Climate Change on a variety of cryo-related issues, including, but not limited to: permafrost, glacier retreat, avalanches, and glacier lake outburst floods.

Hydrospheric engineering has been pursued throughout the Anthropogene. Recent research has shown how ancient civilizations conducted widespread hydrospheric engineering. The Khmer Empire (800 – 1430 AD) of modern day Cambodia, host to the Angkor Wat temple city and other UNESCO World Heritage sites, was renowned and indeed wholly reliant on its extensive waterways, canals, reservoirs and ponds. We have also seen the significance of historical hydrospheric engineering along major river systems of the world, and artificial systems such as the Suez and Panama canals. Many river systems exhibit upstream diversion of life-giving waters which has led to the downstream decline of natural water systems. Indeed, hydrospheric engineering can also be used as a punitive weapon, as realized under Saddam Hussein and the Iraqi State after the failed Marsh Arab uprising in 1991.

Perhaps the most intriguing and strategically significant example of present day lithospheric engineering is demonstrated by the aggressive program of island building in the Spratly Islands are of the South China Sea by China, where influence over major shipping lanes and ownership rights over potentially vast reserves of natural resources are seen as being the objectives.

The Chinese are currently employing dredging technology that has been available since the middle of the last century and satellite imagery shows the rapid pace with which facilities are being augmented at numerous sites. Military examples of island building go back to the 1940s with examples such as the Johnson atoll in the Pacific. Historical examples of island building are plentiful but many modern day examples of island building are on a massive scale that can clearly be seen from space. In this paper island building is differentiated from land reclamation which can be observed currently as a measure against rising sea levels, for example in the Maldives or as a means to increase land space for construction, for example in Gibraltar and Hong Kong.

Integrating Geology into Infrastructure Assessment

Mark H Bulmer - 66 Work Group,170 Infrastructure Support Group, Royal Engineers, Chetwynd Barracks, Chilwell, Nottingham, NG9 5HA, UK

Destructive earthquakes cause loss of life, injuries, damage and loss. The impact to a nation, region or local area of such an event, the ability to respond and pace of recovery are related to the resilience of services provided by infrastructure and those responsible to its operation and management. Therefore, an Infrastructure Assessment (IA) looking at its vulnerability to the effects of an earthquake integrating geological and geophysical knowledge is essential in areas at high risk. When designing earthquake contingency plans, IA conducted in this way provides an approach to determining how to improve resilience and disaster risk reduction before an earthquake occurs and how to respond in the aftermath. It will also assist in determining the relative priorities and how to reinstate damaged or destroyed infrastructure. Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) refers to particular infrastructure, the loss or compromise of which would have a major detrimental impact on the availability or integrity of essential services, leading to severe economic or social consequences or to loss of life. The ability for military engineers to understand the complex dimensions of criticality and apply them to real life scenarios is an essential skill in the contingency environment, allowing them to plan for operations or respond to emergency situations.

Military Environmental Literacy in the South African Army

HAP (Hennie) Smit 1 and JH (Hannes) van der Merwe 2,
1 - Department of Military Geography, Faculty of Military Science, Stellenbosch University, Military Academy, Saldanha, South Africa, 2 - Department of Geography and Environmental Science, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa

Traditional military activities, such as fighting wars are inherently destructive. Modern militaries are confronted by a diverse range of military activities, large areas used by the military for both training and operational purposes, and a global focus on environmentally responsible behavior. These conditions compel militaries to ensure that soldiers will display the correct attitude towards, behavior in, and knowledge about, the diverse physical and cultural environments they occupy and impact upon. In South Africa, this is not only a moral obligation, but a legal imperative as well. The aim of this presentation will be to present results obtained from a study to test the military environmental literacy of South African Army personnel. The aim of the research was to determine the military environmental literacy (attitude, behavior and knowledge towards the environment in which the military operate), of the members of the South African Army. To reach this aim an iterative process to develop a tailor-made, valid and reliable, organization-specific questionnaire to test military environmental literacy in a South African Army context was instituted. A stratified sample was then taken from the nine different formations of the South African Army. In total 25 units, situated throughout South Africa, was selected. Of the 1203 questionnaires distributed to the units, 1090 usable questionnaires were returned.

The main result of this research is an organization - specific, valid and reliable questionnaire to test military environmental literacy (MEL) in a South African Army context. It also established a baseline for MEL in the South African Army, as well as for the nine formations of the South African Army. In all three subscales, those for attitude (mean of 1.8 on a five point Likert type scale), behavior (mean of 1.8) and knowledge (mean of 65%), respondents recorded high scores, indicating a fairly high level of MEL for soldiers of the South African Army. These results were well supported by the results from the qualitative analysis.

Monitoring programs for chemical weapons disposed in European waters

Goran Kniewald - Division for Marine and Environmental Research, Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Bijenicka 54, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia

It has been known for some time now that European waters, like others worldwide (e.g., Plunkett, 2003; Bearden, 2007), are loaded with various types of unexploded ordnance (UXO) and sea-dumped discarded military munitions (OSPAR Commission, 2005; Amato et al., 2006; Böttcher et al., 2011). Underwater munitions pose serious risks to the marine environment and human health alike.In Europe, principal dumping sites are located in the Baltic sea, North sea (including the Skaggerak channel), the southern Adriatic and – likely – the marine area south of the Crimean peninsula in the Black sea. Among the dumped agents are highly toxic substances like mustrad gas, tabun and arsenic-based compounds (lewisite). At least one location with dumped depleted uranium (DU) ammunition is located in the central part of the Adriatic sea.

Since there has been progressively available scintific evidence that after several decades in the corrosive marine environments, this ordnance has started to release their contents into the environment, as indicated by the presence of degradation products of chemical warfare agents found in sediments and biota, some European governments have become increasingly concerned about the fate of this warfare in the sea. The European Union and international organizations (like NATO) have recently launched initiatives to establish monitoring programs in order to identify the dumpsites, possibly types and quantities of dumped ordnance in order to better evaluate the potential risks to the environmet and man. Among these projects are the CHEMSEA project funded by EU and the MODUM project funded by the NATO SPS (Security for Peace) program.


Amato, E. et al. 2006. An integrated ecotoxicological approach to assess the effects of pollutants released by unexploded chemical ordnance dumped in the southern Adriatic (Mediterranean Sea). Mar.Biol. 149:17-23.

Bearden, D.M. 2007. U.S. Disposal of Chemical Weapons in the Ocean: Background and Issues for Congress. Washington D.C.: Congressional Research Service. 25 pp.

Böttcher, C. et al.. 2011 Munitionsbelastung der deutschen Meeresgewässer-Bestandsaufnahme und Empfehlungen (Stand 2011) [Munitions in German Marine Waters -Stocktaking and Recommendations (Effective 2011) .Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency. Bund-Länder Messprogramm Meeresumwelt. )]. Hamburg, Germany.

Plunkett, G. 2003. Sea Dumping in Australia: Historical and Contemporary Aspects. Canberra: Defence Publishing Service. Australian Department of Defence. 128 pp.

OSPAR Commission. 2005. Overview of Past Dumping at Sea of Chemical Weapons and Munitions in the OSPAR Maritime Area. Paris: OSPAR Commission. 13 pp.

Session V

Military Geoscience and Applications 2 (Chair: Marko Bulmer)

Comparison of Soil Moisture Sources on Soil Strength and Resulting Mobility Predictions

Susan Frankenstein - CRREL, 72 Lyme Road, Hanover, NH 03755

The ability to formulate operations in remote locations is important to military planners. Transportation considerations are an important part of this process. All mobility operations, both land and air based, depend on soil strength unless the surface is paved. Soil strength is a function of water content, temperature, and inherent soil physical properties such as cohesion and grain size distribution. With improved quality and availability of remotely sensed data, along with enhanced land surface models, the Army is moving away from climatology classification based methods to more quantitative techniques to determine soil strength in regions where no measurements are available. In this paper I investigate the differences in soil strength and the resulting mobility predictions for various vehicles as a result of using satellite, model and climatological soil moisture. I will also include the effects of uncertainty in these predictions.

Soil Geotechnical Characterization of Desert Surfaces for Testing Ground Robotics

Donald E. Sabol Jr. and Eric McDonald - Department of Earth and Ecosystem Sciences, Desert Research Institute, 2215 Raggio Parkway, Reno, Nevada, USA

Robotics for NASA and the military are important for exploring and performing tasks that are hazardous and/or need to be done in denied terrain. NASA has actively using robotics in the exploration of planetary bodies and has established several analog field test sites to field test robotic designs. One of those sites is on the desert fans near Baker, California that simulate some of the surfaces on Mars. These fans consist of 4 different aged surfaces (Qf2, > 70Ka; Qf3, 15-8Ka; Qf4, 3.2-2.9Ka, and the active wash). As part of this effort, we are analyzing the surface characteristics of these surfaces; to include: spectral reflectance (350 – 2500 nm), surface emissivity, surface clast size and roughness, soil strength and stiffness.

These same attributes are important to the military in developing sensors/procedures for developing robotics and defeating buried IED’s in natural extreme environments. As part of this study, we included additional surface types to this analysis (volcanic, carbonate, sandy, and playa soils) as well as made measurements of both disturbed and undisturbed soils. This research is designed to understand and develop methodologies for characterizing natural surfaces to support robotics development, testing, and evaluation.

Passive Seismic Survey of Sediment Thickness, Dasht-e-Nawar Basin, Eastern Afghanistan

Thomas J. Mack - U.S. Geological Survey, New England Water Science Center, Pembroke, N.H., USA, 03275

Exploration of water and mineral resources is needed in Afghanistan for public supply and economic development. Remotely-sensed data are useful for determining the type of surface sediments, however, geophysical surveys or drilling programs are needed to quantify the thickness of sediments or aquifers. The nature of such investigations presents a risk to field crews that may prohibit exploration of potentially valuable aquifers or mineral resources. The Dasht-e-Nawar basin, in east-central Afghanistan, contains a 400 km2 playa that includes evaporate mineral deposits, particularly lithium, that has been of interest since the 1970s. However, exploration of the basin, as with many areas of Afghanistan, has been hampered by decades of conflict. In 2014, an investigation of the basin was conducted by the U.S. Department of Defense Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO), and their contractor, in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). For this investigation the USGS compared the results of a rapid passive seismic survey of basin sediment thickness to the results of an independently conducted gravity survey of the same area.

The passive seismic equipment used in this study weighs approximately 1 kilogram and is about 10 cm3 in size. Each point measurement requires less than 30 minutes in the field by one person. The technique records ambient noise without an external sound source such as required by traditional seismic surveys. Additionally, the technique does not require external sensor arrays, which can be kilometers long for some geophysical techniques. Although relatively new for assessment of sediment thickness, several investigations have found this method to be capable of estimating sediment thicknesses, in the 10’s to 1000 meter range, in settings with unconsolidated sediment over bedrock with a contrast in acoustic impedance. In this investigation, the gravity survey was conducted during a period of 3 weeks by an experienced field crew; required a detailed, centimeter-scale land elevation survey; and required laboratory analyses of sediment and rock densities to interpret the gravity data. In contrast, the passive seismic survey was collected by one operator over a period of 8 days and required no additional data. Due to security restrictions, USGS personnel could not visit the site and the seismic operator was trained immediately prior to the field work. Although the quality of the seismic survey was affected by strong afternoon winds, and by the inexperience of the field operator, the results were comparable to the gravity survey. Similar sediment thicknesses were identified by both surveys in the basin with an estimated maximum thickness of approximately 170 m. The passive seismic technique required substantially less field resources and time than would be required by other geophysical surveys. Although this method will not be effective in all geologic settings, it may be a valuable assessment tool for use before conducting other, more intensive, geophysical efforts or drilling programs.

Session VI

International Security: Borders to Natural Resources (Chair: Chris Gellasch)

Changes in the Physical Operating Environment: Implications for UK Military over the next Ten Years

Mark H. Bulmer - Roedown Research R2, 3856 Wayson Road, Davidsonville, MD 21035

The 21st Century world that the UK military operates in is increasingly best described by coupled human natural systems. Within the natural system, environmental degradation, geological and hydrometeorological hazards, space weather and climate change all interface and interact with ethnic, religious, ideological and capability drivers creating the human systems. Increasing evidence that climate change is altering the interfaces and interactions that link human to natural sub-systems is being recognized around the world in civil and military policies and strategies. With the incidence of natural disasters increasing, the UK military can be expected to play a bigger role working alongside civil actors and often in urban settings. For the UK military to be most effectively employed requires a renewed emphasis within UK military structures on identifying and preventing naturally induced drivers of conflict, disasters and humanitarian catastrophes. In the next ten years and beyond, the UK military must identify where advice and geo-expertise resides when planning early warning and early action and the long timeframes required to meet threats upstream, undertaking stabilization and achieving stability in conflicts, disasters, environmental emergencies, and humanitarian catastrophes. The relevance of geo-inputs to the strategic, operational and tactical-level civil military planning and co-operation will be directly related to the type of operation, its complexity and geography. This must now be contextualised within the relevant coupled human natural system existing in the defined time and space. This demands a continuous and uncompromising assessment mechanism to measure the ability of the UK Military and civil actors to deliver across these areas of civil military operation.

OKACOM, its Role in Preventing War over Water in Southern Africa

Sorcha Diskin - Geology Cell, 66 Works Group, Royal Engineers, Chetwynd Barracks, Chilwell, Nottingham, NG9 5HA, UK

This paper reviews available literature concerning water resources use in the Okavango River Basin (ORB). It describes a number of common arguments regarding possibilities for the emergence of violent conflict in and among Basin states, particularly those states party to the Okavango River Basin Commission (OKACOM)—Angola, Botswana and Namibia.

OKACOM is a regional, high-level committee that aims at managing the water resources of the Okavango River system in appropriate and sustainable ways and that fosters co-operation and co-ordination between the three. Its role is to anticipate and reduce unintended, unacceptable and often unnecessary impacts that occur due to uncoordinated resources development. To do so it has developed a coherent approach to managing the river basin. That approach is based on equitable allocation, sustainable utilisation, sound environmental management and the sharing of benefits. It was formed in 1994 in response to the acknowledged need to minimise negative impacts on the unique Okavango river system, while assuring satisfaction of the legitimate social and economic needs of the riparian states.

While the Okavango River Basin (ORB) remains one of the least human-impacted basins in the African continent, it provides an example of a transboundary system where human and ecosystem needs compete for scarce water supplies in an otherwise arid region. Competition over natural resources such as water has the potential to result in conflicts among users. The intensity of conflict over resources may vary from confusion and frustration among members of a community over poorly communicated development policies, to violent clashes between groups over resource ownership rights and responsibilities.

In assessing the likely causes and possible solutions of water resource conflicts in the ORB, we must consider the socio-economic factors which have the potential to cause or contribute to water resource conflicts between ORB member states; water demand, current and future ORB states; and treaties and conventions in place to help minimise water resource conflicts between ORB states.

Each of the three member states comes from a different perspective regarding its relationship with the river. Angola it the source and the river flows for most of its length within it. Botswana is home to the Okavango delta, where the river ends its journey against the Thamalakane Fault in the Kalahari Desert. Finally it also crosses through Namibia’s Caprivi Strip for some 40km of its length. In the north-west if Botswana, some 90% of the people directly or indirectly rely on natural resources found in the Okavango system to support their livelihoods and as such anything that happens upstream may affect them. Through Okacom, member-states recognise the importance of working together before conflict arises. Accurate information is a key to conflict avoidance, so the three Basin Commissioners meet regularly while the technical advisors provide advice on matters relating to the sustainable development, beneficial utilisation, integrated management and conservation of water resources of common interests in the Okavango Basin.

So far there has been relatively peaceful resolution to issues arising in the Okavango River Basin, however, with increased industrialisation in Angola and the effects of climate change being felt more and more in Botswana OKACOM needs to carefully evaluate its role in the region.

Silver Bullets and the Paradox of Plenty: Natural Resource Development in Afghanistan

Maj Drew. G. Craig - Geology Cell, 66 Works Group, Royal Engineers, Chetwynd Barracks, Chilwell, Nottingham, NG9 5HA, UK

Since the fall of the Taliban in 2001, it is estimated from public domain information alone that in excess of USD$ 500M has been spent on the development of the extractives sector in Afghanistan. These funds have been utilized by more than 20 organizations working on behalf of approximately 8 primary donor organizations to develop both the hydrocarbon and minerals sectors. Both hydrocarbons and minerals are managed on behalf of the Afghanistan state by the Ministry of Mining and Petroleum (MoMP) but progress on the development of both sectors remains intermittent at best.

Historically, the Paradox of Plenty, otherwise known as the Natural Resources Curse, has at least in part led to instability and conflict in several nations. Examples of where natural resources have sustained instability and conflicts include Angola, Liberia and Sierra Leone. However, the post-peace dividend is such that all three nations now have economies that have a significant benefit from the natural resources found in those states. Of course the Paradox of Plenty is still exemplified by states such as the Democratic Republic of Congo where the bountiful natural resources found throughout this infrastructure poor state sustain both low level and high level instability and indeed intermittent conflict both internally and with neighboring states such as Rwanda, Uganda and the Central African Republic.

Several initiatives, such as the Kimberly Process and the Extractives Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), have reduced the risk of natural resources sustaining conflicts or even catalyzing the onset of hostilities, but the utilization of a state’s natural resources as a means of stabilizing and developing, by international developers and ‘peace-keepers’, is still poorly understood both in terms of the fundamentals required by a state to generate wealth through the exploitation of natural resources and indeed the road map that needs to be followed by donors and their agents to achieve a sustainable solution.

Afghanistan has been widely recognized by exploration geologists as one of the most highly prospective pieces of terrain for nearly 50 years, if not longer. The Soviet exploration and development programmes of the 1970s made major discoveries and generated a huge volume of data and information. Had it not been for the Soviet invasion of 1979 and the following decades if insurgency and civil war, it is very probable that Afghanistan might have become the epicenter of a mining boom.

Despite the well-resourced efforts of a number of minor and major programmes since the entry of international forces into Afghanistan in 2001, a number of key issues are apparent which require detailed attention for the Afghans to truly realize the potential of their natural resources:

  • Reduction of jurisdictional risk; namely an attractive mining law and regulations, transparency of ownership, inter-ministerial coordination
  • The development of an effective Cadaster and Inspectorate
  • Capacity Development and Sustainability within the MoMP and the Afghanistan Geological Survey (AGS)
  • Donor Coordination, Communication and Cooperation
  • Education (Schools, University, AGS and MoMP)
  • Marketing (internationally and nationally; investor perception, Afghan public perceptions)

A Quantitative Assessment of Environmentally Triggered Conflict: The Environmental Security Index

Francis A. Galgano - Department of Geography and the Environment, Villanova University, 800 Lancaster Ave., Villanova, PA

The evolution of the national security landscape since the end of the Cold War has included the recognition of linkages between environmental stress and conflict. The U.S. National Intelligence Council warns that the likelihood of environmentally triggered conflict will increase in the coming decades; and a growing body of quantitative research supports this assessment. This paper does not suggest that environmental stress––alone––causes warfare. To be more precise, it can potentially trigger violent conflict in unique situations of extreme civil instability and within failing states. Evidence suggests that this trend will persist because climate change and population growth will continue to stress marginal environments in places with inherently weak governance. The environmental security perspective does not assert that the nature of conflict is new. Rather, it suggests that because environmental stress growing worse we can expect an increase in the frequency of conflicts with an environmental component. The environmental security model is dependent on four critical variables: environmental stress, resource scarcity, governance, and population. This paper will demonstrate a new environmental security index, based on those key variables. The index expresses the spatial distribution of states vulnerable to environmentally triggered violent conflict.

Session VII

Military History 2 (Chair: Kurt Schroeder)

Infrastructure for Atlantic convoys of World War II: work by Quarrying Companies Royal Engineers in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Faroe Islands

Edward P. F. Rose - Honorary Research Fellow, Department of Earth Sciences, Royal Holloway, University of London, Egham, Surrey TW20 0EX, UK

One particular aspect of geology relevant to naval operations can be illustrated particularly well from the United Kingdom during World War II, when Allied victory in the critical maritime Battle of the Atlantic was aided by enhancement of a land- based infrastructure to support the navy. Construction including new port facilities and airfields created a significant demand for aggregates and rock fill, and thus applied geoscience expertise in locations deficient in appropriately skilled civilian manpower. War Diaries at the UK National Archives reveal that seven of the eight Quarrying Companies Royal Engineers raised in Great Britain during the War were used for projects that supported Allied operations associated with the North Atlantic. Numbers 851 and 854, followed by 857, and then 856 and 125, quarried stone between January 1941 and May 1944 for construction of two military ports in western Scotland—at Faslane and Cairnryan—which on completion were used for secretive export of troops and materiel. 855 was deployed from May to December 1941 further north, to Loch Ewe—the assembly point for Arctic convoys ferrying materiel to the Soviet Union—to quarry stone for port and associated road works. 853 quarried stone between February 1941 and May 1942 in Northern Ireland, partly to support construction of facilities that enhanced the land-based infrastructure for convoy protection. 125 and 856 quarried on the Faroe Islands, a Danish territory halfway between Scotland and Iceland, between May 1942 and June 1943—to aid construction of an airfield and other facilities extending air power northwards from the UK into the Atlantic. The considerable amounts of stone generated, in regions all geologically well known, helped to lay foundations (both literally and metaphorically) for Allied victory in Europe.

American Coastal Defense Third System Forts: How geomorphology dictated placement and influenced history

Stephen W Henderson - Oxford College of Emory University

After the War of 1812, it was very apparent that the United States needed a stronger, more uniform coastal defensive system. With the notable exception of Fort McHenry, many of the earlier coastal forts proved ineffective against the British forces. A total of forty-two Third System coastal defense forts were built from 1816-1867, many of which continued in use through World War II. Because of their purpose, the locations for Third System forts were limited to islands, shoals, shorelines, riverbanks, or hilltops. The majority of these forts are along the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico shorelines, extending from Maine to Louisiana. Many of these forts are situated upon a variety of distinctive geomorphic landforms that are included within coastal and glacial systems or a combination.

A selection of these forts will be discussed here that represent particular geologic and geomorphic aspects from New England to the Gulf Coast. Forts Warren (Georges Island) and Independence (Castle Island) were built on islands in Boston Harbor that can be related to drowned drumlins. Forts Hamilton, Richmond, and Tompkins protected New York City’s inner harbor and are located on the Pleistocene Harbor Hill End Moraine. Fort Pulaski (Cockspur Island) that protected Savannah Harbor and Fort Clinch on Amelia Island, that guarded the mouth of the St. Mary’s River, are located on Holocene barrier islands. Of the forts that surround Pensacola Bay in Florida, Forts Pickens (Santa Rosa Island) and McRee (Perdido Key) were also built on Holocene barrier islands, while Fort Barrancas is on the high ground of the Late Pleistocene Pamlico marine terrace. Forts Morgan and Gaines that protected Mobile Bay were built on Holocene barrier islands, as was Fort Massachusetts on Ship Island in Mississippi.

The history, use, and subsequent threats to these Third System forts can be directly related to the geomorphic systems in which they were constructed. Although militarily outdated, they still represent a remarkable aspect of the military history of the United States.

Session VIII

Terrain and Military Activities (Chair: Drew Craig)

Geographic Influences on the Development of Clandestine Smuggling Tunnels between Sinai (Egypt) and Rafah (Gaza Strip) and Terror-Guerilla Tunnels between the Gaza Strip and Israel

Joel Roskin - Department of Maritime Civilizations, School of Marine Studies and the Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies (RIMS), University of Haifa, Mt. Carmel Haifa, 31905 Israel, and School of Sciences, Achva Academic College, M.P. Shikmim 7980400, Israel

For about two decades, Gaza Strip terrorists and guerillas have been furnished with weapons smuggled from and through Egypt via the northern Sinai Peninsula. Until recently, the smuggling route was the clandestine tunnels between the Egyptian and Gazan section of the city of Rafah at the southeastern corner of the Mediterranean coastline. The story of the development of this tunnel network, carved out of a sequence of calcareous and sandy palaeosols, is the story of a unique combination of physical, geotechnical, historical, political, and military geographical factors. Those factors have helped the Gaza guerillas and terrorists to undermine Israel’s military defense activities by exploiting their underground labyrinths for smuggling weapons and transporting guerillas and terrorists between Gaza and terror-supporting countries. Already at an early stage, the Gazans realized how difficult it was for the Israelis to destroy their tunnels and they extended their operations from smuggling weapons and goods to activities such as burrowing detonation tunnels ('terror tunnels') beneath Israeli outposts in order to blow them up and / or kidnap their personnel. They later developed underground bunker systems and rocket/missile launching pads from which they could target Israeli towns and villages. The development of the Gaza Strip tunnels is examined in terms of their construction, the activities they support, and the significance of their surrounding geological and geographic features.


Netra Regmi and Craig Rasmussen - Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ

These RDT teams would be small, specialized, egalitarian U.S. Army teams staffed by volunteer National Guard soldiers who are civilian workers in these fields: physical sciences, engineering, economy and resource-development. These soldier-experts would work in strategic locations, building resource capabilities and knowledge with the local communities. For autonomy, these teams would mirror the ADT structure and would be led by a colonel with the appropriate staff and security, which would provide full access to both equipment and to maneuverability in their area of operations. The need for these RDTs is manifold, but on the most strategic level, they could provide an understanding of a country’s resources in a dangerous environment where civilian government and non-governmental organizations cannot or will not work. Some examples of RDT project sectors could be water-, mineral-, ecological-, and environmental-resources. Within these sectors, geoscientists would be able to not only provide instrumental support to maintaining or refurbishing existing infrastructure, but could also begin developing the knowledge necessary to start larger projects through educational efforts and cataloging/preserving/developing baseline environmental data (e.g., streamflow, geological/ecological maps). These new or continued baseline data are critical to providing the context necessary for longer term resource planning. RDT efforts would support COIN efforts by helping prepare a developing country to stand on its own economic feet when the inevitable withdrawal of support occurs. A combination of education and technical support and sustainable, resource-development planning and projects can help stabilize a government’s economy.

Predicting Local to Regional Dust Emission in Deserts Using Soil-Landscape Models in Support of Military Activities

Eric McDonald - Department of Earth and Ecosystem Sciences, Desert Research Institute, 2215 Raggio Parkway, Reno, Nevada, USA

During the past two decades, the U.S. armed forces have been called on repeatedly to operate in the deserts of the Middle East and southwest Asia. Methods are required to predict both local to regional sources of dust because the airborne dust can have a negative impact on critical military operations (i.e. loss of visibility), create adverse health impacts to military personnel, and for increasing the abrasion and corrosion to military equipment operating in desert regions. One of the most significant impacts of dust during military operations in Iraq (Operation Iraqi Freedom) and Afghanistan (Operation Enduring Freedom) was the loss of over 400 aircraft (mostly rotary-wing aircraft) from dust brownouts, commonly referred to a Degraded Visual Environments (DVE). Determining sources of dust and estimating dust emission potential requires the ability to predict basic soil characteristics and the related potential emissivity; however, areas of important strategic interest often from lack required terrain and soil information and are often in areas of dynamic and changing environmental conditions.

Many years of soil and geomorphic research have shown that the dust content, and the related dust emission potential, in soils (generally considered particles (0.125 mm in diameter) in most desert regions is commonly associated with specific landforms and soil types. We have developed an expert-based system that integrates rapid mapping of desert landforms with conceptual models of soil-landscape evolution that have a demonstrated ability to predict primary soil and terrain conditions. This integrated effort is performed in a geographic information system (GIS) framework using expert-based analysis of airborne and spaceborne imagery to identify terrain elements. Furthermore, new instrumentation that measures soil dust emission and new techniques of surface characterization using digital elevation models, provides additional critical information that enhances predictions of dust soil content and emissivity. The objective of this presentation is to summarize the results of previous published studies and reports where we have used our GIS-based soil-landscape model to produce derivative map-based predictions of the spatial distribution and content of dust-sized particle in soils and surface sediments. Applications include providing regional critical dust data sets for input for US Air Force-based regional atmospheric models used to predict dust and sandstorms in SW Asia and as a potential tool to predict areas most likely to produce dangerous DVE conditions.

The Implementation of a Transportable and Robust Radio-element Mapping System

Jacques Bezuidenhout - Faculty of Military Science, Stellenbosch University, South Africa

Gamma ray spectroscopy as a survey tool has been successfully applied in the fields of morphology, geology and responses to nuclear events and accidents. The necessity arose for a robust and highly transportable gamma ray field survey system that could be used in geographically challenging and remote areas. Various new technical advances provided the opportunity for the development of such a unique field measuring system. This was achieved by integrating an USB driven scintillation detector with a field tablet and creating software to control acquisition and analyses of radiation data, as well as logging position. This new system acquires in situ gamma ray spectra, extract radionuclide concentrations and finally interpolate data to produce concentration maps while on location. This presentation article provides an overview of the implementation of the system in different geographical locations. Results from these measurements are also demonstrated. Future studies and the possible application of the system in nuclear incidents are illustrated. The possibility to apply the system in the military is also explored.

Terrain analysis in your pocket: using a tablet or smartphone

Peter Guth - Department of Oceanography, United States Naval Academy

The rise of handheld smart phones and tablets brings increasing capabilities to users in the field who may not have internet connectivity. These devices have the storage capacity and processing capabilities to perform terrain analysis. Our goal is to investigate the capabilities and limitations of handheld devices to conduct terrain analysis using digital elevation models (DEMs) and lidar point clouds, and how this can best be integrated with web delivery of cloud-based analysis.

At least 4 approaches exits for terrain analysis on a handheld device: (1) full blown Windows tablet; (2) HTML-5 in the device’s browser; (3) web service to prepare analysis graphics; and (4) native code app on the handheld to manipulate and display the analysis. Three typical devices in Table 1 will be used to illustrate these options.

A fast tablet like the Microsoft Surface 3 will run standard desktop software without a web connection, but will not go into pockets, and its lack of a built in GPS adds complexity to configuration. The HTML-5 option allows all processing to be done in the browser, but requires an internet connection. The web service option displays data processed remotely, but could enhance the display on the handheld device using its sensors to orient the display.

Native apps on the handheld device can run entirely on the handheld device, downloading the data and doing the processing locally. The procedures currently run 6-30 times slower than on fast Windows desktops where most are virtually instantaneous, but optimizations and smart tradeoffs should improve speed and the hardware will get faster. Terrain analysis in the field, without a network connection, can be done locally on devices that fit into your palm and your pocket, and that people already use for other purposes.

Session IX

Panel Discussion: Future of Military Geosciences (Chair: Ted Rose)

An open panel discussion will be held during the afternoon of Friday the 19th regarding future trends and research areas of interest in military geosciences. Committee and Technical Session chairs will track important topics and discussion points during the conference. The panel will lead discussions of key topics identified throughout the conference. The conference committee will collate and summarize discussion topics with results being presented in a technical paper that will be included with the published proceedings.

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