National Survey LV95

In the period from 1988 to 1995 the Federal Office of Topography swisstopo developed a national surveying system that is largely based on satellite measurement. LV95 replaces the 100-year-old national survey (LV03), based on triangulation. The fundamental point for LV95 is the geostation in Zimmerwald, near Bern.

The national survey is based on two new reference systems:

CHTRS95

The CHTRS95 global system is connected to the international and European reference systems. It includes a kinematic model and is suitable for scientific applications and demanding engineering projects.

CH1903+

The local reference system, CH1903+, is static and provides the coordinates reference system for all surveying activities. By connecting observations to the old national survey, the data from the still official reference system, CH1903, could be adopted and transformed into the new system, CH1903+.

As of 1988, the basic network LV95) was built up in smaller networks and determined with a high degree of accuracy using the satellite navigation measurement method. It consists of approximately 200 carefully chosen geodetic control points. The “absolute” accuracy of the coordinates throughout Switzerland is within 1 to 2 centimetres for the horizontal component, and 2 to 3 centimetres for the ellipsoidal height. It entered into effect as the official reference system at the beginning of 2017.

The results of the CHTRF measurement campaign showed that some regions shift by up to 1 millimetre a year, which means that the indicated accuracy of the coordinates for these regions cannot be adhered to. Work is being carried out in an effort to find a solution so that the realisation of CH1903+ can be assured without adjusting individual coordinates.

In order to be able to distinguish LV95 coordinates in the CH1903+ system from the old LV03 coordinates in the 1903 system, a seventh number has been placed at the beginning of the previous six-digit coordinates. This concerns a 1 in the north-south direction and a 2 in the east-west direction. In addition, the coordinate axes are now designated with E (= east-west) and N (= north-south). On the national maps only the labelling of the coordinates in the margin is changed.

 

Image of Switzerland with the new coordinates
In order to be able to distinguish LV95 coordinates in the CH1903+ system from the old LV03 coordinates in the 1903 system, a seventh number has been placed at the beginning of the previous six-digit coordinates. This concerns a 1 in the north-south direction and a 2 in the east-west direction.


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

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Relevant authority

Geodesy and Federal Directorate of Cadastral Surveying
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Print contact

Federal Office of Topography swisstopo

Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern

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