SO262 Physical Geography Project
Each student in the course will prepare a final project. This semester our
projects will work toward creating an on-line atlas of the provinces of
Syria, Lebanon, eastern Turkey, and northeastern Jordan, presented in Google Earth. You may work on the
project in groups of up to three students, but the group will do one province
per member. Provinces will be assigned by email request to the instructor,
and the lists below will be updated. Your request can include several
choices in case your first choice has already been taken.
the physical geography of the region. This will include climate,
landforms, soils, vegetation, and natural hazards of the region.
Particularly in seismically active areas, you should cover earthquakes.
- Briefly discuss military operations and political and
social characteristics of the province, but concentrate on
how the climate and physical landscape affect military planning, and operations.
- The project will be presented as a KMZ file (a zipped KML file that also
includes all the graphics) for display in Google Earth.
We will cover the specifics later, but for starting you can will create a
series of Word files each of which will be linked to a specific spot in the
province and pop up your document when the user clicks on it.
- You will have the following graphics as a minimum:
- Maps showing elevations and slopes in the area, from the SRTM.
- Map showing the classified landcover, with a table showing the
- Climograph and graph of ETO created in MICRODEM, using the standard scales and conventions which allow easy
comparisons of climographs for different provinces.
- Graph showing the length of daylight throughout the year.
- In addition to graphic images, your KML should have a substantial
text component to explain the landscape, climate, and the effects military
operations. You can use the maps in the text book to look up the soil,
climate, and vegetation classifications in the area,
and then discuss the characteristics of those classifications and how they
influence military operations. You should discuss how the battle or
operation might have been different if it had occurred during a different
time of the year.
- All measurements should be in the metric system (m, km, and
- Any imagery you use must be free of
copyright restrictions. You will credit the source of the imagery, and
if you are not sure about the copyright, you will not include the image.
Just because you can grab an image does not mean you are free to use it.
- You will have a references cited section to
list your sources and to refer readers to additional information.
As you should have learned by now, because it
involves learning how to get the computer to do something, this project has the
potential to require extra love and care at the end. You should get the
project done early to insure that you can get help if you need it. At the
very least you should insure that you know how to transform your Word file into
KML, and have done that with a rough draft of the final project well before the
Within MICRODEM, there are directions in the
help file on how to make maps. Look in the contents, Tutorials and Labs,
Physical Geography, Provincial Map. There is also a
Help forum (not on a USNA computer).
Fall 2013 Student Final Projects:
Syria and vicinity
Fall 2012 single KMZ,
Student Final projects: Central Asia
Fall 2009 Student Final Projects:
Iraq and Afghanistan
MICRODEM help file
Home page Lesson Objectives
Prof Guth home page