ZMI — Zanzibar Mapping Initiative Level 1

The Zanzibar Mapping Initiative is the largest civilian drone mapping project in the world — an ambitious project to map the Zanzibar Archipelago using a whole host of eBee drones.

Khadija Abdulla Ali demonstrating launch.

The project is nearing completion of mapping Unguja, the larger of the two main islands.

Yussuf Said Yussuf showing how the camera seats in an eBee drone.
Yves Barthelemy talking to the ZMI team.
Unguja Island from Landsat 5, 2009

Because of the large area to be covered, ZMI required an approach to partition the data into manageable flight areas.

Zone grid

And in practicality, these were flown as overlapping areas, with some areas flown at a higher resolution:

Overlapping flight areas


Now here’s the problem: how do we put these back together with just GDAL and a Windows command prompt? I had the privilege of testing out my ideas on these data:

Cookie cutter versions of the imagery.

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