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Military Aspects of Geology: Fortification, Excavation and Terrain Evaluation

Product Code: SP473
Series: GSL Special Publications
Author/Editor: Edited by E. P. F. Rose, J. Ehlen and U. L. Lawrence
Publication Date: 15 January 2019
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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.

Published online 08/01/2019. Print copies available from 15/01/2019.

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Type: Book
Ten Digit ISBN:
Thirteen Digit ISBN: 978-1-78620-394-6
Publisher: GSL
Binding: Hardback
Pages: 314
Weight: 0.88 kg



Rose, E. P. F., Ehlen, J. & Lawrence, U. L. Military use of geologists and geology: a historical overview and introduction

Coastal fortification

Bromhead, E. N. The landslip-damaged Roman fort at Lympne in SE England

Mather, J. D. Groundwater supplies to maritime and coastal defences in southern England: a story of risk and innovation

Henderson, S. W. American coastal defence Third System forts: how geomorphology and geology dictated placement and influenced history

Häusler, H. The northern Atlantic Wall: German engineering geology work in Norway during World War II


Doyle, P. Trench construction and engineering geology on the Western Front, 1914–18

Willig, D. German military geology and military mining on the Eastern Front in World War I

Rose, E. P. F. Quarrying Companies Royal Engineers in World War I: a geologically constrained innovation to support British armies on the Western Front

Rose, E. P. F. Quarrying Companies Royal Engineers in World War II: contributions to military infrastructure within the UK and to Allied forces during the North African, Italian and NW Europe campaigns

Rose, E. P. F. Tunnelling Companies Royal Engineers in World War II: excavation of bomb-proof facilities in France, Gibraltar, Malta and the UK

Mackay, A. D. Engineering geological considerations for the ‘Old’ Beacon Hill Railway Tunnel, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

Bulmer, M. H. Geological considerations of contemporary military tunnelling near Mosul, northern Iraq

Terrain evaluation

Harrelson, D. W., Torres, N., Tillotson, A. & Zakikhani, M. Geological influence of the Great Red River Raft on the Red River Campaign of the American Civil War

Rose, E. P. F. Aerial photographic intelligence during World War II: contributions by some distinguished British geologists

Malm, F. One hundred years of cross-country mobility prediction in Germany



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