GE 5642 - Military Geology
PowerPoint Presentations
-Master List of Briefing Topics For Class

Reading Assignments:
-The Role of Engineering-Geologic Factors In The Early Settlement And Expasion
of the Conterminous United States
-Destruction And Protection of Germany's Ruhr Valley Dams During World War II
-Military Applications of Hydrology (1957)

-On War - Defense of Rivers And Streams-von Clauswicz (Part I)
-On War - Defense of Rivers And Streams-von Clauswicz (Part II)

-Amtrac Operations at the Battle of Guadalcanal (1942)
-Guadacanal:  The Opposing Plans (1942)
-Amphibious Warfare - Landing Ships and Craft in World War II
-Operation Overlord: The Greatest Assault (1944)
-Doolittle, Black Monday, and the Necessity of Innovation
-The Iwo Jima Memorial

-The Race To Build The Atomic Bomb
-The Conversion of Commander Rogers


The Jubail desalination plant in Saudi Arabia is the largest in the world. The plant produces
800 million gallons per day, while generating 5,000 megawatts of power. Fresh water is a vital
environmental resource in the Middle East.

Environmental Security :
-Innovative Solutions For Water Wars In Israel, Jordan, And The Palestinian Authority
(.PDF of 34 Slide PowerPoint Show)
-Not Enough To Go Around - Battles Over Water
Apportionment, Pollution and Replenishment in the Middle East
(.PDF of 66 Slide PowerPoint Show - 13 MB)

-Innovative Solutions For Water Wars In Israel, Jordan, And The Palestinian Authority
(.PDF of 20 Page Paper)

-Water And Environmental Security In The Middle East
(.PDF of 11 Page Paper)


A Cold War Era Soviet-built MiG-25 Foxbat was unearthed from a sand dune
near the Al Taqqadum airfield in Iraq in July-August 2003 by members of the Iraq Survey Group as
they were searching for weapons of mass destruction. The wings had been removed, intakes sealed
and fuselage covered with camouflage netting before being buried more than 10 feet beneath the
Iraqi desert.

Current Operations:
-Military Applications of Underground Openings
-Forensic Seismology
Bomb Damage Assessment, Fire Damage, Evaluation of Diminished
Capacity, and Developing New Strategies for Short, Medium, and
Long-term, Mitigation/Repair

-Role of  Geology in Assessing Vulnerability of Underground Fortifications

-U.S. Army Engineers in the Balkans 1995-2002
-Clamshell Temporary Buildings
-Compact 200 Rapid Reaction Bridge System
-Hesco Welded Wire Fabric Bastions
-Geology of Afghanistan


M-1 Abrams gas turbine powered Main Battle Tank advancing at high speed
across the Empty Quarter of northeastern Saudi Arabia.

Gulf War (1990-91):
-Gulf War I (1990-91)


Bell UH-1B Huey helicopter landing at an Army Engineer base in South Vietnam in 1967.
The U.S. lost 4,869 helicopters during the Vietnam conflict.

Vietnam War:
-Siege of Dien Bien Phu (1954)
-Siege of Khe Sanh (1968)
-The Tunnels of Cu Chi


American M-60 tanks operating on European highway during the Cold War. 
The American Interstate and Defense Highway Program created in 1955 was
based on wartime experience with the German Autobahns during the Second
World War.

Cold War:
-U.S. Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Silos
-U.S. Arctic Research Programs (1950-1970)
-Atomic Energy Commission's Plowshare Program (1958-1975)


Navy Skyraiders of VA-195 and VC-35 attack the Hwachon dam with Mk 13 aerial torpedos on
May 1, 1951.  It was the last time aerial torpedos were ever used in combat.

Korean War:
-Attacks on the Hwachon Dam (1951)
North Korean Infiltration Tunnels and Clandestine Tunnel #4


On May 16-17, 1943 No. 617 Squadron of the RAF dropped specially configured spinning
depth charge bombs against two cyclopean masonry gravity arch dams in the Ruhr Valley
of Germany, destroying them and their powerhouses.

World War II:
-Salvage of The Battleship USS Utah Following the Attack on Pearl Harbor 1942-1944

-Salvage of The Battleship USS Oklahoma Following the Attack on Pearl Harbor 1942-1946
-Construction of The Alcan Highway (1942-43)
-Red Hill Fuel Storage Tanks at Pearl Harbor (1940-43)
-American Railroads in the European Theatre (1944-45)
-Army Port Construction in the European Theatre (1943-45)
-German Underground Structures and Production in WWII
-Combat Engineering in the Battle of the Bulge
-Battle of Guadacanal (1942-43)
-Attack on Tinian Island and Construction of B-29 Air Bases (1944-45)
-British Application of Geology to the Normandy Invasion (June 1944)
-The Military Geology Unit of the U.S. Geological Survey
-Development of Quonset Huts (1941-45)
-Overview of the Navy Seabees During World War II

-Deception Tactics and Camouflage Techniques; World War II to Present
-Military Geology and the German Afrika Korps (1940-43)
- Evolution of the Bailey Segmented Bridge (1940-45)
-Japanese Reverse Slope Defense Schemes on Tarawa, Iwo Jima And Okinawa (1943-1945)

-Overview of German U-Boat Bases and Bunkers (1941-1945)


The Corps of Engineers has long held responsibility for year round navigation of the nation’s navigable waterways.

View showing break in the Santa Ana River levees during the March 1938 flood, which inundated almost 50% of Orange County, CA.  The Federal Flood Control Act of 1927 brought the Corps of Engineers to the forefront of providing for cooperative flood control nation-wide, often working with local agencies.

Between The Wars:
-1927 Mississippi River Flood
-German Military Geology: Between The Wars


The First World War (1914-18) marked the transition between beasts-of-burden
and mechanical vehicles providing the lion’s share of logistic support, though
not always successfully.

World War I:
-Royal Engineer Operations
-Earthen Fortifications in WWI
-American Military Geology in World War I
-British Mining During World War I


The first ship to transit the Panama Canal was the S.S. Ancon on August 15, 1914, just as the First World War was erupting in Europe.
The battleship New Jersey transiting the Galliard Cut in April 1984, following her fourth recommissioning in late 1982.

Panama Canal:
-History of The Panama Canal

-Landslides of The Panama Canal

-Defense of The Panama Canal

Panama Canal: The World's Landslide Laboratory

-Panama Canal: Problems with the Gaillard Cut


Painting "Maine" by James Flood
Although the explosion of the Battleship Maine on Feb 15, 1898 was later
determined to be an accident, the event was blamed on the Spanish and was
the triggering factor for the Spanish American War.

Spanish American War:
-U.S. Occupation of Cuba (1898)
-Corps of Engineers Exhumation of the Battleship Maine (1912)
-Geographic Constraints on Amphibious Operation, Drinking Water in the Invasion of Cuba by U.S. Forces


French Engineers designed and built this steam powered conveyor dredge to excavate sand from the Suez Canal in the late 1860s.
USS America transiting the Suez Canal in the mid-1980s.

Suez Canal:
-Construction of the Suez Canal


Post Civil War:
-Construction of The Eads Bridge in St. Louis
-Royal Army Sappers


The Union gunboat Lexington rushes through the breach made in a wooden
dam across the Red River in northwestern Louisiana during the Civil War. 
This was the first of a series of timber dams constructed to extract 13
gunboats that had been marooned on the river by low spring runoffs in

American Civil War:
-Forts Henry and Donelson (1862)
-Battle of New Madrid and Island No. 10 (1862)
-Battle of New Madrid and Island No. 10 (additional presentation)
-Siege of Vicksburg
-Siege of Petersburg, VA (1864-65)
-Battle of Pilot Knob
-50th New York Volunteer Engineer Regiment
-Geology and the Civil War in Southwestern Virginia: Union Raiders in the New River Valley (May 1864)

-Submarine Warfare In The Civil War
-Siege of Vicksburg, MS (1863)


The first Army engineers were employed at the Battle of Bunker Hill in 1775.
By the time the Siege of Yorktown was undertaken in the fall of 1781 the Engineer
Corps was well established and made major contributions to that final victory.

American Revolution:

-The Battle of Yorktown (1781)
-Formation of the Corps of Engineers

-Washington's Providential Escape From Brooklyn Heights in August 1776
-Defense of West Point on the Hudson (1775 – 1783)

Questions or comments on this page?

E-mail Dr. J David Rogers at