OMAN – Our work in a nutshell
 Version 1959

The work in the Oman was mainly air photo annotation, compiling names sheets and altimeter heighting. Here are a couple of  pages which describe our task in a nutshell.

From This

Crown copyright material reproduced with the permission of the Controller HMSO

The RAF flew the aerial photography in liaison with a RASLS unit which was also responsible for the ground control (astro fixes & triangulation). Photos measured 279 x 279mm and were flown at a height which, taking into account the elevation of the terrain above sea level, would give a scale of about 1:80,000. Thus each photo covered about 500
Adjacent photos gave stereo cover (3-D effect) when viewed through a stereoscope. This aided enormously photo interpretation in the field

Crown copyright material reproduced with the permission of the Controller HMSO

42 Survey Engineer Regt. in Cyprus carried out the plotting and printing at 1:100,000 of the Preliminary Unchecked Compilation (PUC) sheets which were then sent with the photos to 19 Topographic Sqn. to do the field work
The air photos and PUC sheets were field annotated to show towns and villages, tracks and wadis, altimeter height-point and names-sheet reference numbers.

This PUC sheet was used for referencing height points whose elevations were determined by theodolite observations (in blue) and altimeter (in red). The precise position of each point was identified on the relative air photo and pin-pricked, with its reference number written on the back.

Annotation (description of features) was usually done on the relative PUC rather than on the back of the air photo for obvious practical reasons

To This

Crown copyright material reproduced with the permission of the Controller HMSO

The finished product, produced by 42 Survey Engineer Regiment.
This example was, I believe, printed in 1963
Some (perhaps) interesting information:

The detail area of each Preliminary Unchecked Compilation 1:100,000 sheet was about 510 x 370 mm, which means that it covered an area of about 51 x 37 km or 1,887 Given that the area of the Oman is about 309,500, there would have been about 164 sheets for total coverage, although I don’t know if there was in fact total coverage.

The number of photos covering each PUC sheet, allowing for a 60% longitudinal overlap and a 25% lateral overlap, was about 24. Of these, some covered two or more adjacent sheets and so the average number of photos per sheet would work out at perhaps 18. The total number of photos to cover the Oman would therefore be about 164 x 18 = 2952. This seems quite a reasonable estimate.



With thanks to  Trevor "Bill" Powell for this contribution
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