Working in the Army as a Topographic Analyst is much like working as a civilian land surveyor. You are working in the area of graphics, overlays, maps and drawings that are used by all members of the Army including battlefield commanders. Topographical Analysts use satellite images, geospatial data, digital photographic data, remote sensed images, and intelligence data to produce these maps and products for use by the Army. The Topographic Army Analyst is called upon to help plot troop activity and enemy troop movements.
One of the main responsibilities for Army Topographic Analysts is to perform terrain and geographic analysis duties. They work to supervise and oversee data collection, and military geographic data collection from a variety of sources. Some of the duties you may have as an Army Topographic Analyst may include: Providing geospatial information and charts in real time for commanders to visualize their battlefield and troop movements, making drawings to scale of buildings, airfields, roads and military projects, extracting satellite images and geospatial data to obtain field reconnaissance and remote sensory information, and to analyze military collected geographic information to yield information for tactical decisions.
Additional duties you may be asked to perform as a Army Topographic Analyst might be to build scale models of geographic and land areas to show roads, lakes, hills, valleys and other topographic features, to draw or scribe features on different surfaces or record features in digital formats, to assemble and compile geographic information into maps, special products and overlays, and to analyze digital information to assist battlefield commanders in real time.
To train as an Army Topographical Analyst you need to attend the requisite 9 weeks of Basic Army Combat Training. After boot camp you will attend 18 weeks of individual advanced training, including practice operating different types of topographical equipment. During your classroom and on the job training you will work in aerial photo interpretation, drafting and surveying techniques, and structural and architectural drawing skills. If you have an interest in Algebra, geometry, and trigonometry, and you can visualize space and objects and transfer them into drawings and maps then this may be the career field for you.
Civilian careers for the ex Army Topographical Analyst include working as a mapmaker, cartographer, surveyor, or photo documentation specialist.