Tips for Making a Good Map

Good flight planning is a critical part in producing high quality data outputs.  Based on the type of terrain you are flying over, the proper flight path can make all the difference.

If you have a compatible DJI drone, download the free Skycatch flight app to your iOS device for flight planning made easy! For more information or to download the app, visit the iTunes store here.


A good rule of thumb is 75% overlap and 60% side lap.  For sites such as construction & mining, it will sufficiently capture enough data to produce accurate results.  However, there are situations where you should increase the overlap to at least 85%:

  • Area with dense trees or vegetation
  • Snow, sand, grassy areas with very little textures

High accuracy results = high overlap between images

Altitude and Speed

Generally, recommended settings for mission planning would be 3 - 8 meters/second ground speed at an altitude of 60 - 120 meters. However, sometimes it's beneficial to fly the mission at a higher altitude so each photo has less distortion and contains a larger area:

  • Agricultural fields with repeating patterns
  • large solar panel installations

For sites with significant changes in terrain elevation, flying at a fixed altitude above the ground will produce the most consistent output.  When that's not possible, multiple flight paths should not differ by more than 10 meters.

Camera Positioning

  • Angle your camera directly towards the ground (nadir photos) to get good results  
  • Oblique images should be captured so that the object of interest is in the center of your photos. Do not point the camera towards the horizon. 
Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request


Powered by Zendesk