One hundred years of cross-country mobility prediction in Germany
Published:January 01, 2019
Florian Malm, 2019. "One hundred years of cross-country mobility prediction in Germany", Military Aspects of Geology: Fortification, Excavation and Terrain Evaluation, E.P.F. Rose, J. Ehlen, U. L. Lawrence
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The potential for cross-country mobility (CCM) by vehicles has increasingly become an integral part of tactical planning for military operations and depends on a multitude of parameters. A comprehensive trafficability forecast requires the analysis of terrain, including slope, land cover and soil properties, and weather, as well as specific vehicle parameters. Terrain and weather interactions were recognized as important for the first time during World War I, when all types of vehicle would frequently bog down in muddy ground. The lessons learned influenced the orientation of future German military geology. During World War II, German military geologists and engineers prepared their first CCM maps. However, these often lacked a consistent format and standardized analysis. During the Cold War, the US Army carried out extensive research to create empirical mobility models based on physical properties and trafficability tests. These results were incorporated into the production of CCM maps. Present day computer-based data processing and analysis have opened up the possibility of enhancements to trafficability forecasting and thus make a vital contribution to providing the armed forces with advice on exercises and operations.
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Military Aspects of Geology: Fortification, Excavation and Terrain Evaluation
This book complements the Geological Society’s Special Publication 362: Military Aspects of Hydrogeology. Generated under the auspices of the Society’s History of Geology and Engineering Groups, it contains papers from authors in the UK, USA, Germany and Austria. Substantial papers describe some innovative engineering activities, influenced by geology, undertaken by the armed forces of the opposing nations in World War I. These activities were reactivated and developed in World War II. Examples include trenching from World War I, tunnelling and quarrying from both wars, and the use of geologists to aid German coastal fortification and Allied aerial photographic interpretation in World War II. The extensive introduction and other chapters reveal that ‘military geology’ has a longer history. These chapters relate to pre-twentieth century coastal fortification in the UK and the USA; conflict in the American Civil War; long-term ‘going’ assessments for German forces; tunnel repair after wartime route denial in Hong Kong; and tunnel detection after recent insurgent improvisation in Iraq.