Was ist Geodäsie?

Geodesy and Geoinformation: What's that?

 

What is Geodesy?

Geodesists are the first everywhere. They determine figure and gravity of the Earth on the whole as well as in detail, monitor constructions like dams and wind mill facilities, record and document real and legal properties and much more.

Since in ancient times Geodesy is dealing with the determination of the Earth' figure, but also with practical issues like the yearly repeated surveying of the fields after the nile flood. Till this day the question about the figure of the Earth has prevailed: does the figure resemble a disc, a globe, or rather a 'potato'? Even if the right answer 'potato' seems a little bit exaggerated one should notice that if the whole Earth would be covered by water, one could measure deviations of about 20 km at the poles compared to an ideal globe and in addition irregular distributed dints of up to 100 m deep or high with respect to a so-called rotation ellipsoid, which corresponds to a 30-storied building (the in such a manner defined 'potato' is called Geoid: it is shown in the picture with inflated deviations with respect to the globe).

Geodesy is concerned with such kind of global, scientific questions and with smaller-scale or even local tasks like the determination of bounderies from country size down to single properties, as well as surveying of most different objects from the smallest workpiece to huge constructions.