Ground Control Points (GCPs)

What Are They Used For?

In order to enable general use of aerial, satellite and ground-based imagery, geospatial professionals process the collected images to correctly position them in relation to the Earth. To ensure that the image is in the right position, it is necessary to provide accurate ground coordinates. This is the role of AccuEarth. We are continually collecting new Ground Control Points (GCPs) around the world to provide accurate coordinate data to support orthorectification of imagery and an increasing variety of other applications.

Our global network of skilled professionals will travel anywhere in the world to collect GCPs.

cape verde ground control point

Example of ground control point from Cape Verde

Ground Control Applications

aerial image


When planning an aerial data collection effort, a review of the available AccuEarth control points may allow for the use of existing control data, eliminating or reducing the need to send a survey crew into the field, saving you time and money on your project

satellite image


Satellite data is improving, but the fact is, the vast majority of satellite imagery available today requires Ground Truth to create accurate maps. Orthorectification without GCPs is inherently inaccurate.

Ground control plays a role in several other applications including:

  • Photogrammetry
  • Urban Planning
  • Natural Resource Management
  • Utility Mapping
  • Earthquake / Landslide Evaluation
  • Climate Change Including Glacial Retreat or Advance
  • Land Use / Cover Mapping
  • Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Verification
  • Surface Elevation Mapping

Want to learn more? Visit GCP101 page and download a whitepaper going farther in details.