Geographic Position Determined by Intersection

by William E. Ball,

Serial Information: Journal of the Surveying and Mapping Division, 1968, Vol. 94, Issue 2, Pg. 189-202

Document Type: Journal Paper


Several unique geodetic distance intersection airborne surveying methods for determining the geographic positions of points on the earth's surface have been developed by engineers of the Cadastral Surveys Branch, United States Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management. The analytical solutions to the geometric problems associated with the three most successful of these methods, the three range, four range, and two range and elevation solutions are described. The geographic coordinates of a point can be determined using slope distances only or slope distances and elevations measured from several points of known geographic position and elevation to the point of unknown position. If electronic distance measuring instruments are employed for measuring the slope distances between points and an automatic computer with double precision is used to obtain the analytical solution, the geodetic distance intersection methods are among the simplest and most direct methods available for determining the geographic coordinates of points of unknown position.

Subject Headings: Land surveys | Management methods | Slopes | Distance measurement | Intersections | Geodetic surveys | Surveys (non-geomatic) | Land use

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