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Determine the Grid Coordinates of a Point
on a Military Map

Conditions: Given a standard 1:50,000-scale military map in a field location, a 1:50,000 grid coordinate scale, a pencil, paper, and a point on the map.

Standards: Determine the six-digit grid coordinates for the point on the map with a 100-meter tolerance. Record the grid coordinates with the correct two-letter
100,000-meter-square identifier.

Performance Steps

1. A military map can help you spot your location accurately. The map has vertical lines (top to bottom) and horizontal lines (left to right). These lines form small
squares 1,000 meters on each side called grid squares.

2. The lines that form grid squares are numbered along the outside edge of the map picture. No two grid squares will have the same number.

3. The precision of a point location is shown by the number of digits in the coordinates; the more digits, the more precise the location. For example, "1996" is a 1,000-
meter grid square, that is, it identifies a location to the nearest 1,000 meters. "192961" is a 100-meter grid square, that is, it identifies the location to the nearest 100
1.        Look at Figure 071-329-1002_001. Your address is grid square 1181. To determine your address, start from the left and read right until you come to 11, the first
half of your address. Then read up to 81, the other half. Your address is somewhere in grid square 1181. Determine your address to the nearest 100 meters. Grid
square 1181 gives your general neighborhood, but there is a lot of ground inside that grid square. To make your address more accurate, just add another number to
the first half and another number to the other half so your address has six numbers instead of four.

Figure 1. Grid square 1181.

a.        To get these extra numbers, suppose that each grid square has 10 lines inside it running north and south, and another 10 running east and west. This makes
100 smaller squares. You can estimate where these imaginary lines are (Figure 071-329-1002_002).

Figure 2. Grid square 1181 divided.

b.        Suppose you are halfway between grid line 11 and grid line 12. Then the next number is 5 and the first half of your address is 115. Now suppose you are also
3/10 of the way between grid line 81 and grid line 82. Then the second half of your address is 813. Your address would be 115813 (Figure 071-329-1002_002). (If you
are exactly on line 81, the second half would be 810.)
2.        Use a coordinate scale. The most accurate way to determine the coordinates of a point on a map is with a coordinate scale. You need not imagine lines,
because you can find the exact coordinates using the coordinate scale, protractor (GTA 5-2-12, Figure 071-329-1002_003), or the plotting scale (Figure 071-329-
1002_004). Each device actually includes two coordinate scales, 1:25,000 and 1:50,000 meters. Make sure that, regardless which device you use, you choose the
correct scale.

Figure 3. Coordinate scale and protractor.

Figure 4. Plotting scale.

a.        Locate the grid square where the point is located, for example, Point A (Figure 071-329-1002_005; this point should already be plotted on the map.)

Figure 5. Placement of the coordinate scale.

b.        The number of the vertical grid line on the left (west) side of the grid square gives the first and second digits of the coordinate.
c.        The number of the horizontal grid line on the bottom (south) side of the grid square gives the fourth and fifth digits of the coordinate.
d.        Place a coordinate scale on the bottom horizontal grid line of the grid square containing Point A to determine the third and sixth digits of the coordinate.
e.        Check to see that the zeros of the coordinate scale are in the lower left-hand (southwest) corner of the grid square where Point A is located (Figure 071-329-
f.        Slide the scale to the right, keeping the bottom of the scale on the bottom grid line until Point A is under the vertical (right-hand) scale (Figures 071-329-
1002_006 and 071-329-1002_007). To determine the six-digit coordinate, look at the 100-meter mark on the bottom scale, which is nearest the vertical grid line. This
mark is the third digit of the number 115. The 100-meter mark on the vertical scale nearest to Point A gives you the sixth digit of the number 813. Putting these
together, you have 115813.

Figure 6. Aligning the coordinate scale.

Figure 7. Aligning the plotting scale.

g.        To determine the correct two-letter 100,000-meter-square identifier, look at the grid reference box in the margin of the map (Figure 071-329-1002_008).

Figure 8. Grid reference box.

h.        Place the 100,000-meter-square identifier in front of the coordinate, GL115813.

Evaluation Preparation: SETUP: Give the Soldier a standard 1:50,000-scale military map in a field location, a 1:50,000 grid coordinate scale, a pencil, paper, and a
point on a map for which coordinates must be determined.

BRIEF SOLDIER: Tell the Soldier to write down the two-letter 100,000-meter-square identifier and the six-digit grid coordinates for one point, along with the two-letter
100,000-meter-square identifier.

                                                                                                                                                                                                           Performance Measures        GO        NO-GO
1.        Determined the 6-digit grid coordinates for the point on the map with a 100-meter tolerance.                                                                                  ——        ——
2.        Recorded the grid coordinates with the correct 2-letter 100,000-meter-square identifier.                                                                                           ——        ——

Evaluation Guidance: Score the Soldier GO if all performance measures are passed. Score the Soldier NO-GO if any performance measure is failed. If the Soldier
scores NO-GO, show the Soldier what was done wrong and how to do it correctly.

Required        Related
FM 3-25.26        
GTA 05-02-12        
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