Global Area Reference System (GARS)

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Overview------Design-----Graphic-----Digital GARS(downloads)

Article in Nov/Dec 2006 PathFinder

  • OVERVIEW----GARS is the standardized battlespace area reference system across DoD which will impact the entire spectrum of battlespace deconfliction. It is based on lines of longitude (LONG) and latitude (LAT), to provide an integrated common frame of reference for joint force situational awareness to facilitate air-to-ground coordination, deconfliction, integration , and synchronization. This area reference system provides a common language between the components and simplifies communications . It is important to note that GARS is primarily designed as a battlespace management tool and not to be used for navigation or targeting.
  • DESIGN----GARS divides the surface of the earth into 30-minute by 30-minute cells. Each cell is identified by a five-character designation. (ex. 006AG)
  • Each 30-minute cell is divided into four 15-minute by 15-minute quadrants.
  • Each 15-minute quadrant is divided into nine 5-minute by 5-minute areas.


  • Point of Contact: Coordinate Systems Analysis
    phone (314) 676-9124, DSN 846-9124
    coordsys@nga.mil

    Document last modified September 15, 2014

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