Define a Coordinate Reference System (CRS) for New and Existing Projects

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Please note which subscription types have access to the features below. 


In this article, we will explore:


Select your CRS when creating a new project: 

1. Create a new project 

2. DroneDeploy will recommend a most likely CRS for your project based on project location

3. Click the drop-down to select from other available CRS




4. If you do not see the EPSG code relevant to your project within the drop-down list you may add it by selecting “Other EPSG Code” in the drop-down list. 





Custom Coordinate Systems


Define a Project Level Custom-Grid

Available for Advanced, Teams & Enterprise subscriptions 


You may now define a custom CRS in project settings for the entire project in DroneDeploy. Historically, you could process GCP maps in custom coordinates by providing coordinates in both a published CRS and a custom CRS.

Now you can save time defining your custom CRS in DroneDeploy simply by uploading a calibration file. You may define your custom CRS by uploading a Trimble .JXL calibration file or providing a list of coordinated pairs of points in .CSV format (templates are available in the upload custom grid menu in project settings)


After applying a custom grid to your project, Location annotations, Imports, and Exports will default to your custom CRS, which is now set as the Project-CRS.

How to add a Custom-Grid to your project: 


  1. In project settings, from the Coordinate System dropdown choose Upload Custom Grid



  1. Select Choose Files 

Screenshot 2023-12-21 at 12.16.01 PM.png


  1. Upload your Trimble  .JXL calibration file or coordinated pair CSV (for convenience, unit based templates are available for download)



  1. Confirm Upload 


  1. Your Project-CRS is now set to the custom grid defined in your calibration file!




GCPs and Custom Coordinates 

If your Project CRS is set to a Custom Grid, you may then provide GCP coordinates in custom coordinates only.


CSV Templates: 

Custom Latitude / Longitude Template (m)

Custom Northing / Easting Template (m)

Custom Northing / Easting Template (ft)



FAQs and Limitations 

  • Project Level Custom Grids are completely reversible, you may revert your Project CRS to another EPSG code at any time in Project Settings
  • When using a coordinated-pair .CSV to define a custom grid, it is recommended to provide at least 4 points in published and custom coordinates
  • Multiple custom-CRS are supported within a single project, but only one may be set as the “Project CRS”
    • This allows for generating exports in many unique custom-CRS from one map


Define a Coordinate Reference System for existing projects:

There are two ways to update the CRS for an existing project 

1. Update the CRS in the project settings. Project settings can be located by clicking on the gear icon at the top right of the project. 



2. When uploading Ground Control Points to your project the system will update the project to the defined local CRS.

More information about Ground Control Points here




General FAQs

Can I view the State Plane Coordinate System (SPCS) coordinates based on the assigned CRS (coordinate reference system) for a project?
Yes! Please see more information on our Annotations page


What happens to current projects? 

Nothing will change at the project level until a customer manually goes in and defines the CRS or it will be automatically updated in the next GCP upload


Can you still specify your own EPSG codes? 

Yes, but it has to be an existing code. Only Teams and Enterprise subscriptions can add custom codes.


What happens with a new GCP upload?

When a new GCP upload occurs and there is not a CRS set, we will update the CRS for the project to the selected local CRS automatically.

If there is a new GCP upload and a CRS is set, then it will use the one that is set for the project. 


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