GIS applications in Civil Engineering Page 1 of 6
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By: Juan C. Tejada III, M.ASCE
Geographic Information System (GIS)
is a computer-based system that handles the input,management, manipulation, analysis and output of
1.1 Data Types and Models:
GIS comes in Two (2) Basic Forms all of which are demonstrated in the map to the right:
1.1.1 Spatial data - what maps are made of
The spatial data is to be referenced to specificlocations on earth and stored as graphicelements, and are made up of points, lines, andareas. Spatial data forms the locations andshapes of map features such as buildings,streets, or cities.
1.1.2 Tabular data - adding informationto maps
Non-graphic attributes tied to spatial data and stored in a relational database. Tabular data isinformation describing a map feature. Using streets as an example, depending on your goalsyou will have to determine whether you need the following attributes: street name, routenumber, road class, road surface class, address ranges, traffic volume, and under- or overpass.In addition,
can be further classified into Two (2) Types of Data Models:
1.1.1a Raster data model
Image data includes such diverse elements as satelliteimages, aerial photographs, and scanned data—datathat's been converted from paper to digital format.
1.1.1b Vector data model
A mathematical object with precise direction andlength but without specific location. This objectis defined as x, y direction in space.
Satellite image of Abu Dhabi Island showing proposed maor road imrovements in ellow, red & can lines.