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I have to admit - I dislike Lat and Long. I'm used to the Military Grid Reference System. Can anyone tell me how UTM and MGRS are related? Are they different names forthe same thing?

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In the army we use topographical maps all the time. It is easier to find out where you are on the map by using mgrs. With a ten figure grid you can get to within 1 meter. but usually the maps are off plus to minus 25 m. If you need any more info give me a shout



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MGRS is "basically" a subset of UTM that enables troops in the field within a given area to refer to a location in relatively short form.


If you look at a topo map for the UTM grid, you will notice that the MGRS numbers are the last 5 digits per side. For example a UTM of


4567384 North is 4,567,384 meters north. In MGRS numbers 67384 remain the same and the 45 is replaced with a two letter code like RP.


As you know, in a typical tactical situation I might call my platoon commanders and order an RV at 456 789. This could be one of hundreds or thousands of locations on the planet, however in our area of operations this is PROBABLY only one location. Since the 45 and the 78 represent Kilometres (the 6 and the 9 are 100m's)


In the event of a larger AO or having to call in an artillery or air strike you would need to be more specific. Since giving a grid ref like "567898 4567894 Zone 17T" is somewhat cumbersome over the radio you really need a better way so the 5 and 45 are replaced with the two letter code.


This is a rough explaination and there are lots of more precise sites on the net that explain this.





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