Dataset Open Access

Orthophotos and DSMs derived from RPAS flights over the nature reserve Zwin in Flanders, Belgium

Vanden Borre, Jeroen; Klaas Pauly; Van Hoey, Stijn; De Reu, Jeroen; Desmet, Peter

Dublin Core Export

<?xml version='1.0' encoding='utf-8'?>
<oai_dc:dc xmlns:dc="" xmlns:oai_dc="" xmlns:xsi="" xsi:schemaLocation="">
  <dc:creator>Vanden Borre, Jeroen</dc:creator>
  <dc:creator>Klaas Pauly</dc:creator>
  <dc:creator>Van Hoey, Stijn</dc:creator>
  <dc:creator>De Reu, Jeroen</dc:creator>
  <dc:creator>Desmet, Peter</dc:creator>
  <dc:description>Study area

The Zwin is a nature reserve situated along the Belgian North Sea coast, northeast of Knokke, in the province of West-Flanders, Flanders, Belgium. The area is managed by the Flemish Agency for Nature and Forest and consists of a tidal marsh, coastal dunes with Ammophila arenaria, dune grasslands and/or shrub (Hippophae rhamnoides, Salix repens), and a transitional grassland zone that stretches from the inner edge of the coastal dunes into the polders.

Data collection

Data were collected by the Research Institute for Nature and Forest (INBO) with a fixed wing drone Gatewing X100 in 2014 and 2015 (15 flights). RGB data were acquired using an off-the-shelf Ricoh GR Digital IV camera, with the following image bands: 1: red, 2: green, 3: blue, 4: alpha channel. CIR (color-infrared) data were acquired using a NIR-enabled Ricoh GR Digital IV camera, with the following info bands: 1: NIR, 2: red, 3: green, 4: alpha channel.

Data processing

The raw data were processed to Digital Surface Models and orthophotos by the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO) in 2017. Images with coarse GPS coordinates were imported and processed in Agisoft PhotoScan Pro 1.4.x, a structure-from-motion (SfM) based photogrammetry software program. After extraction and matching of tie points, a bundle adjustment leads to a sparse point cloud and a refined set of camera position and orientation values. Ground control points (either artificially installed markers on the terrain, or other photo-identifiable points, measured on the ground with RTK GNSS) were used to further refine the camera calibration and obtain a pixel-level georeferencing accuracy. From there, a point cloud densification and classification into ground and non-ground points was performed, leading to a rasterized digital surface model (DSM) and digital terrain model (DTM). Finally, a true orthomosaic was projected onto the DTM.

Coordinate reference system

All geospatial data have the coordinate reference system EPSG:31370 - Belgian Lambert 72.


	Raw flight data: images and logs collected by the drone during flight. These files are zipped per flight, with the date (yyyymmdd) and flight number (x) indicated in the file name (
	Processed data: Digital Surface Models (filename_DSM.tif) and orthophotos (filename_Ortho.tif) stitched together from the raw data. The included flights are indicated in the file name (e.g. 6 flights for 20150709_Zwin_1-3_20150710_Zwin_1-3_DSM.tif).
	Ground control points: fixed ground control points (GCP) were placed on 2014-04-07, coordinates of which are available in GCP_20140407_Zwin_fixed.tsv. These GCPs are visible (but fading over time) in all orthophotos except 20151012_Zwin_1-4_Ortho.tif which covers a different area. Additional temporary GCPs were placed on 2014-04-07, 2014-04-10 and 2015-07-09 (visible in orthophotos of those dates), coordinates of which are available in the respective GCP_yyyymmdd_Zwin.tsv file.

Cloud Optimized GeoTIFF

The most efficient way to explore the processed data is by loading the Cloud Optimized GeoTIFFs we created for each processed file. Copy one of the file URLs below and follow e.g. the QGIS tutorial to load this type of file. CIR CIR RGB RGB

See this page for an overview of public INBO RPAS data.</dc:description>
  <dc:description>This dataset was collected using infrastructure provided by INBO and funded by Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO) as part of the Belgian contribution to LifeWatch.</dc:description>
  <dc:subject>digital surface model</dc:subject>
  <dc:subject>remote sensing</dc:subject>
  <dc:subject>nature management</dc:subject>
  <dc:title>Orthophotos and DSMs derived from RPAS flights over the nature reserve Zwin in Flanders, Belgium</dc:title>
All versions This version
Views 123123
Downloads 438438
Data volume 1.7 TB1.7 TB
Unique views 108108
Unique downloads 111111


Cite as