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SWISSIMAGE to be published faster and more often

The SWISSIMAGE orthophoto mosaic will be published more frequently from August 2017, shortening the time between acquiring the aerial images and distributing the product to six months.

The data will be available more quickly to all users and on all platforms: the swisstopo onlineshop, the federal geoportal and via the WMS and WMTS geoservices.  

Until the end of July 2017, two large regions measuring around 8,000 km2 were published each year. From now on, SWISSIMAGE will be updated as soon as a processing block is complete. These blocks, which are smaller (from around 400 to 3,000 km2) but greater in number, enable SWISSIMAGE to be published more often, significantly shortening the time between acquiring the aerial images and updating the product (up to six months). Of course, the last blocks for a given region don’t benefit much from this flexibility. 

The figure below illustrates a theoretical example of the old (on the left) and the new (on the right) frequency for updating SWISSIMAGE with the different publication dates. In the right picture, the number on top represents the number of months that would have been saved between the data being acquired and distributed.

Left: map showing the outline of the region updated according to the old SWISSIMAGE publication frequency. Right: map showing the outlines of the work blocks updated according to the new SWISSIMAGE publication frequency.
Example of the old (on the left) and the new (on the right) frequency for publishing SWISSIMAGE

This innovation enables the SWISSIMAGE product to be much more up to date. However, it will have a temporary side effect during the transition between the new and old images. Specifically, the join between the blocks which have already been updated and the old orthophotos which make up the SWISSIMAGE mosaic will not be adapted until all the processing blocks have been published. This means that there may be differences in colour and the geometry of certain objects. These side effects will disappear when all the images for the year have been published. 

swisstopo has invested heavily in automating its publication processes to help increase the frequency of updates. The most recent images produced can now be published automatically on the various distribution platforms such as map.geo.admin.ch or the onlineshop in just a few hours. Eventually, other geodata from the federal geodata infrastructure will benefit from this automation. This will make it possible to offer products to the public that are more and more up to date.


Federal Office of Topography swisstopo Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern
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+41 58 469 01 11

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Federal Office of Topography swisstopo

Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern

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