Though the geographic information system (GIS) has greatly shaped the way public and private companies, governmental entities, and charitable groups conduct their business, few seem to understand just how important it has become. Even when people comprehend the basic framework of a GIS, the way it combines geographical information with other kinds of data, they often fail to see the revolutionary way in which it has impacted decision making. Read on to learn more about the various applications of GIS in different industries, including ours – Electrical Utilities!
How do electric utilities use GIS?
Just as GIS interfaces with diverse industries in different ways, so such systems look unique when it comes to electric utilities. How? Well, each component of a utility’s distribution system appears in the real, physical world and generates data related to it. By using GIS to produce a detailed electric circuit connectivity model, electric utilities can more efficiently operate their grids.
In practice, this helps electric utilities prepare for and deal with natural disasters such as hurricanes, fires, and various geological disturbances that could damage a grid. On-site sensors feed real-time data to your GIS, letting you know what’s happening and where. Such information can move beyond merely protecting an electrical utility’s assets. It also lets decision makers know when customers, employees, or the environment face unsafe situations. Additionally, maintaining a GIS connectivity model allows electric utilities to efficiently plan, an essential step in today’s fast-moving environment.
GIS encompasses a truly wide field, and Milsoft Utility Solutions understands how it has revolutionized numerous industries. Our unique GIS helps electric distribution utilities achieve greater efficiency, because it’s tied into an engineering circuit model, providing real-time information. To learn more, contact us or request a demo.
How is GIS used in urban planning?
Anyone who has suffered through a bad windstorm or snowstorm can appreciate the work of a talented urban planner. These designers of infrastructure can help keep the electricity on, the water flowing, and the internet piping the World Wide Web into property, usually through decisions made decades or more in the past. One of the ways they make those decisions is through detailed GIS projections.
GIS plays two roles in urban planning, the first being analysis. By compiling spacial information from sources such as satellites and planes, cities and municipalities can add in other data for examination. Planners can then spatially sort the following data:
Spatially sorting this data allows decision makers to understand the context that their actions will affect.
The second contribution of GIS for urban planning involves modeling, the manipulation of projections to determine their potential impact. This allows urban planners to determine the potential impact of approving development near a wetlands area or approving a new block of conditional-use zoning or the potential load on a proposed power plant. In other words, it makes alterations in a metropolis or community something far more than mere guesswork.
How is GIS used in forestry?
While the roles GIS plays in the urban-planning space might seem varied, they’re surprisingly varied when applied to forestry. Broadly stated, GIS aids with forest management. That aid, though, can take many different forms.
Timber companies have turned to GIS in order to maximize their profits, selecting the most lucrative sections of forest to harvest. However, both private and public companies have put the technology to use in planning for wildfires, analyzing the properties of various types of vegetation, complying with environmental regulations, and preserving forest habitats for various species.
How is GIS used in the military?
For millennia, nations have fought over places, assets, and even individuals located on various points on maps. Geography has played a vital role in armed conflict with military commanders struggling to take control over the proverbial high ground, and it’s no wonder that they employ GIS to evaluate terrain. That’s far from its only function, though. GIS can provide up-to-the-minute weather information, aid in camp-site management, play a role in anti-submarine maneuvers, and facilitate logistics management, all of which are often vital.
How is GIS used in geography and mapping?
Geographically focused map making might seem an entirely different discipline from GIS. In one sense, it is. GIS involves multiple data sources, of which the actual map is only a part. However, GIS and cartography have become linked in multiple ways. Map makers use GIS to employ multiple forms of relief shading (i.e., a visual technique for representing topography). Various algorithms have allowed mappers to better understand colorblindness and how to make maps more accessible. And GIS technology allows those charting maritime geography to more accurately represent bodies of water.