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Open-File Report 2011–1306

User’s Guide for mapIMG 3—Map Image Re-Projection Software Package

By Michael P. Finn and David M. Mattli

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (3.4 MB)Background

Scientists routinely accomplish small-scale geospatial modeling in the raster domain, using high-resolution datasets for large parts of continents and low-resolution to high-resolution datasets for the entire globe. Direct implementation of point-to-point transformation with appropriate functions yields the variety of projections available in commercial software packages, but implementation with data other than points requires specific adaptation of the transformation equations or prior preparation of the data to allow the transformation to succeed. It seems that some of these packages use the General Cartographic Transformation Package (GCTP; Elassal, 1987) or similar point transformations without adaptation to the specific characteristics of raster data (Usery and others, 2003a).

Usery and others (2003b) compiled and tabulated the accuracy of categorical areas in projected raster datasets of global extent. Based on the shortcomings identified in these studies, geographers and applications programmers at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) expanded and evolved a USGS software package, mapIMG, for raster map projection transformation (Finn and Trent, 2004). Daniel R. Steinwand of the USGS’ Earth Resources Observation and Science Center, originally developed mapIMG, basing it on GCTP (Usery and others, 2001). Through previous and continuing efforts at the USGS, this program has been transformed from an application based on command line input into a software package based on a graphical user interface for Windows, Linux, and other Unix (officially trademarked as UNIX) machines.

mapIMG 3 is on the Web. Source code and binaries available for download at:

First posted January 20, 2012

For additional information contact:
Director, USGS Center of Excellence for Geospatial Information Science (CEGIS)
1400 Independence Road
Rolla, MO 65401
(573) 308–3837

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Finn, M.P., and Mattli, D.M., 2012, User’s guide for mapIMG 3—Map image re-projection software package: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2011–1306, 12 p.


Version History

Preface to Version 3

Preface to Version 2


General Input Information

Parameter Descriptions

Executing mapIMG

References Cited

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