The application of Geographic Information System (GIS) is becoming more and more prevalent in the defence sector.  

In recent years, the use of GIS in defence has grown and has the potential to provide numerous benefits in a range of areas.  It can be a powerful tool for the military and can be used for coordinating military operations, surveillance, intelligence, and for homeland defense. 

GIS allows for the visualization of data that is otherwise difficult to see. This can be both in the form of imagery, or in the form of maps. Since the accuracy of information is key to quick and effective decisions in military operations, GIS is evolving as an indispensable tool.

This blog discusses the key applications of GIS in the defence sector. 

How GIS can increase the efficiency of military operations?

The defense sector utilizes GIS in many ways, including mapping and charting all military plans and operations. It allows the military to make more informed decisions. For a better understanding let us examine the areas of military operations that are supported by GIS.

  • Defense estate management – GIS can play a crucial role in defense estate management. The defense estates require a significant amount of effort for effective management. Among the advantages of GIS in the management of military bases is that it facilitates the maintenance and management of all stores on a base. Land and facilities managers can use GIS to reduce costs of maintaining military bases, improve mission effectiveness, analyze alternatives more quickly, and improve communication.
  • Terrain evaluation – Another application of GIS is in terrain evaluation. The military requires a detailed land map with information on the terrain model, proximity of habitat, and land use information. GIS can help to analyze terrain features and identify elevations, vegetation cover, communication lines, and road networks. It also supports to predict the most likely ways that an enemy could attack. GIS can be deployed in defense sector to monitor and identify the location of hostile objects, where they are and what their trajectory is. It can be used to create a three-dimensional map of the battlefield and to simulate events, and to visualize potential actions to take. With a combination of GIS and Remote Sensing, military intelligence can see the enemy’s position, movements, and intentions in real-time, and can also be used to track, identify and classify targets. This has helped militaries to plan their operations effectively.
  • Accurate maps – For planned operations, military personnel need to assess a situation from a geographic picture, map or photograph. GIS is used to generate maps for a wide variety of purposes and helps to identify and analyze targets, plan and execute combat operations, and locate potential threats.
  • Weather updates – In battle, weather plays an important role. For successful completion of missions on land, in water, or in the air, real time weather information is crucial. GIS can provide real-time weather updates and provide commanders with information regarding wind conditions, cloud coverage, visibility, and other inputs.
  • Logistics management – In military logistics, GIS plays a vital role because it facilitates the delivery of supplies, troops, and equipment to the right places on time. GIS systems allow forces to determine alternative routes in case mishaps occur on the main route.


The use of GIS is growing in defense sector and is an essential tool that helps to collect, store, and analyze geographic data to provide intelligence information to defense forces. It can play a vital role in decision-making and planning and support air, sea, and land operations of the military.

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