Chinese military has unveiled its world advanced three-dimensional (3D) topographic map of Lanzhou city, according to a report published Wednesday on its official website.
A measuring and mapping information center under the Lanzhou Military Area Command (MAC) of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) used world-advanced 3D printing technology in the topographic map-making and successfully developed China’s first 3D topographic map on November 20, 2013.
Compared with the traditional man-made sand tables, the latest 3D topographic map has lighter weight and portability. Obsolete maps were used as the printing materials instead of professional and expensive printing materials such as gypsums. It has cut down the cost to the maximum and made the map highly promotable.
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 an official of the Lanzhou MAC.
The research team had been dedicated to upgrade the map by improving the precision of the A4-sized 3D topographic map from the previous 1.0 mm to present 0.1 mm, and shortening the printing time from the previous 24 hours to 8 hours. They also expanded the scope of the 3D topographic map as well, according to Wang Mingxiao, the director of the research team.