Team Physics -
Created by: Team Physics -, Last Updated: April 25, 2024


What is Milliradian?

A milliradian, often abbreviated as “mrad” or just “mil,” is a unit of angular measurement used particularly in ballistics and for measuring angles in geographic information systems, among other fields. It is defined as one-thousandth of a radian, which is a mathematical way of measuring angles based on the radius of a circle.

To calculate distance using milliradians:

Distance (m) = Size of Object (m) / Angle (mrad).


To find the size of an object:

Size of Object (m) = Distance (m) × Angle (mrad).

SI multiples of Milliradian

SI PrefixSymbolFactorEquivalent in MilliradiansDescription
Kilomilliradiankmrad10³1 kmrad = 1,000 mradUsed for broad angular spans.
Decimilliradiandmrad10−¹1 dmrad = 0.1 mradSuitable for finer precision in engineering or artillery.
Centimilliradiancmrad10−²1 cmrad = 0.01 mradUsed for very precise angular measurements.
Micromilliradianµmrad10−³1 µmrad = 0.001 mradUtilized in scientific research for ultra-precise measurements.

Additional Formulas Involving Milliradian

Calculating the subtended size of an object at a distance:

Subtended Size (m) = Distance (m) × Angle (mrad)

This formula is used to determine the physical size or length of an object based on the angle it subtends and the distance to it.

Conversion of Milliradian into other Units

Conversion of Milliradian into other Units
From Milliradians (mrad)To UnitConversion FormulaApproximate Conversion
1 mradDegrees (°)Degrees = mrad×(180)​/π×10000.0573°
1 mradRadians (rad)Radians = mrad×0.0010.001 rad
1 mradMinutes of arcMinutes of Arc = mrad×(180×60)/π×10003.4377′
1 mradSeconds of arcSeconds of Arc = mrad×(180×3600)/π×1000206.265”

To understand how to convert milliradians (mrad) into other units of angular measurement, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the key formulas. Here is a detailed overview to assist in these conversions:

Converting Milliradians to Degrees:

Formula: Degrees = mrad×(180​)/(π×1000)

Since there are 2π radians in a full circle (360 degrees), and 1000 mrad in a radian, this formula adjusts for these values to convert mrad directly into degrees.

Converting Milliradians to Radians:

Formula: Radians = mrad×0.001

This conversion is straightforward because 1000 milliradians equal one radian by definition.

Converting Milliradians to Minutes of Arc:

Formula: Minutes of Arc = mrad×(180×60)/(π×1000)

One degree contains 60 minutes of arc, hence this formula multiplies the degree conversion by 60 to get minutes.

Converting Milliradians to Seconds of Arc:

Formula : Seconds of Arc = mrad×(180×3600)/(π×1000)

Since one minute of arc contains 60 seconds, this formula converts milliradians first to degrees, then to minutes, and finally to seconds.

These formulas and conversions provide a useful toolset for translating milliradians into more commonly used angular measurements, which can be critical in fields like astronomy, navigation, and surveying. Each conversion allows for precise angular measurements critical in technical applications.

Uses of Milliradian

Uses of Milliradian

Milliradians (mrad) are a unit of angular measurement commonly used in various fields for their precision and practicality. Here are some of the key uses of milliradians:

1.Military and Shooting Sports: Milliradians are extensively used for artillery, rifle scopes, and other targeting devices in the military and shooting sports. They help shooters calculate the adjustments needed on their sights to hit targets at varying distances. This is particularly useful as it allows for quick and precise adjustments without needing complex calculations.

2.Surveying: In surveying, milliradians assist in the accurate measurement of angles between different points on a site. This precision is crucial for creating reliable maps and executing construction projects with exacting standards.

3.Engineering: Engineers use milliradians in fields such as mechanical and civil engineering to ensure precise angular measurements are maintained in designs and constructions, such as in the alignment of structures or components.

4.Astronomy: Astronomers use milliradians to measure the apparent sizes of celestial bodies and their separation in the sky. This unit allows for a precise understanding of the scale and distance of objects in space relative to one another.

5.Optics: In optics, milliradians are crucial for aligning and calibrating equipment like laser systems, telescopes, and other optical devices. They ensure the precision of angles required for accurate focus and direction of light.

6.Robotics: Robotics applications use milliradians for precise movement and orientation of robotic limbs and tools. Accurate angular measurements ensure that robotic actions are both precise and repeatable, which is vital for automation and manufacturing processes.


What is 1 milliradian at 1000 meters?

At a distance of 1000 meters, 1 milliradian subtends approximately 1 meter. This relationship is derived from the definition of a milliradian as one-thousandth of a radian.

How many inches is 1 MRAD at 100?

At 100 meters, 1 milliradian subtends approximately 3.937 inches. This calculation is based on the conversion where 1 meter equals approximately 39.37 inches.

AI Generator

Text prompt

Add Tone

10 Examples of Public speaking

20 Examples of Gas lighting