Defence & Security Industry News - China
|Thursday, February 20, 2014 07:02 PM|
Chinese Army uses 3-D printing technology to create 3D military topographic map.
A measuring and mapping information center under the Lanzhou Military Area Command (MAC) of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) utilized the internationally-advanced 3D printing technology in the topographic map-making field and successfully developed China’s first 3D topographic map, namely, Urban Area Three-Dimensional (3D) Topographic Map of Lanzhou City, on November 20, 2013.
A 3D representation of a 1:250 000 topographical topographical map
This achievement was recently appraised as at the internationally-advanced level by experts.
This 3D topographic map has complete factors and comprehensive marks with high precision, measurement and calculation application, light weight and portability as compared with the traditional man-made sand tables.
The successful development of the 3D topographic map can provide accurate and reliable basis for military topographic analysis, for commanders to make decisions and for troop units to carry out their missions, thus it possesses high military application values, according to a leader of the Lanzhou MAC.
In addition, the technical personnel of the measuring and mapping information center used thousands of tons of obsolete maps stored in the center’s map warehouses as the printing materials to develop the 3D topographic map, instead of the internationally-used professional and expensive printing materials such as gypsums, resins, special plastics and metal powders. It has cut down the cost to the maximum and made the map highly promotable.
After the successful development of the first 3D topographic map, the technical personnel are now dedicated to the technical upgrading and renovation for the topographic map. Currently, they have improved the precision of the A4-sized 3D topographic map from the previous 1.0 mm to present 0.1 mm, shortened the printing time from the previous 24 hours to present 8 hours, and expanded the scope of the 3D topographic map from inside the Lanzhou Theater to outside the Lanzhou Theater, according to sources.