Military hydrography, meteorology and oceanography

Up-to-date knowledge of the environment helps to increase the security of military personnel. During military missions, commanders therefore want as much recent information as possible about the environment they and their men and women find themselves in. This up-to-date information includes information on safe sea routes (hydrography), the weather (meteorology) and on the conditions in specific sea areas (oceanography).


The Defence organisation has in-house specialists who monitor these environmental fields, collect the required information and pass it on to commanders. This is done in accordance with NATO standards, increasingly in digital form.

Planning and execution

Every commander uses environmental information for the planning and execution of military exercises and operations. Such information will allow him or her to deploy units, weapons and sensors in the most effective way possible. For maritime operations, commanders require hydrographic, meteorological and oceanographic information for, for example, localising and clearing sea mines or carrying out amphibious operations, involving troops making beach landings from Royal Netherlands Navy (RNLN) ships.