Military Map Symbols
Knowledgebase | Basic Symbology
Understanding Force Strengths - From Army Group on Down to Team
• Army Group: 400,000 to 1,000,000 personnel commanded by a General or Field Marshal; divided into two or more Armies.
• Army / Field Army: 50,000 or more personnel commanded by a 4-Star General; divided into two-to-four Corps.
• Corps: 20,000 to 45,000 personnel commanded by a 3-Star General / Lieutenant General; divided into two-or-more Divisions.
• Division / Legion: 10,000 to 15,000 personnel commanded by a 2-Star Major General; further divided into three-to-five Brigades / Regiments.
• Brigade / Regiment: 2,000 to 5,000 personnel commanded by a 1-Star Brigadier General or Colonel; armed cavalry = Regiment or Group; divided into five Battalions.
• Battalion: 300 to 1,000 personnel commanded by Lieutenant Colonel; divided into three-to-five Companies; U.S. Cavalry unit = Squadron.
• Company / Battery / Troop: 60 to 200 personnel commanded by a Captain, 1st Lieutenant, or Major; Artillery = Battery; Armored Air Cavalry = Troop; divided into three-to-five Platoons.
• Platoon: 18 to 50 personnel commanded by a 2nd Lieutenant; divided into Section / Patrol.
• Section / Patrol: 8 to 25 personnel commanded by a Staff Sergeant or Sergeant; divided into Squads.
• Squad: 6 to 12 personnel commanded by Sergeant or Corporal; divided into Teams / Crews.
• Team / Crew: 2 to 4 personnel commanded by a Lance Corporal, Sergeant, or Private 1st Class.
NOTE: The information above is general and numbers reflect what is typically followed by modern Armies today. As such, numbers are not 'fixed', allowing for some flexibility in totals depending on operating country.
Airborne elements / units are designated by combining a 'gull wing' symbol with the arm or service symbol as follows:
The following symbols placed either in boundary lines or above the rectangle, triangle, or circle enclosing the identifying arm or service symbol indicate the size of military organization:
Company / Troop / Battery / Flight
Battalion / Cavalry Sqdrn / AF Sqdrn
Regiment / Group / Combat Team
Brigade Cmd / Armored Div / AF Wing
Division / Command of an Air Force
Specialized weapon types receive their own symbols on a military map:
Putting it All Together
The letter or number to the left of the symbol indicates the unit designation; to the right, the designation of the parent unit to which it belongs to. Letters or numbers above or below boundary lines designate the units separated by the lines:
Company A, 137th Infantry
8th Field Artillery Battalion
Cbt Cmd A, 1st Armored Division
Cmd Post, 5th Infantry Div
Btw 137th & 138th Infantry