This is documentation of an archived release.
For documentation on the current version, please check Knowledge Base.

Orbit Mapping Resource

This page documents the concepts of Mapping Run and Resource Group.
To get a complete overview of all supported data types for Mapping Runs, see Supported Mapping Resources.


To use Aerial, Aerial Oblique, and Mobile Mapping data in Orbit, the raw data needs to be imported and processed into an Orbit Run using a corresponding import template.

Orbit imports and organizes mapping data into runs and groups.

  • A Run is a single import.
  • A Group is a combination of one or more Runs.

Prepare data for import

Depending on the mapping system or setup you are using, you will collect trajectory, point cloud data, and imagery either 360° images, planar images, or both.
Before importing the captured mapping data, the standard tools of your system should be used to prepare, correct, process, and export the data. Mobile mapping imposes all captured data is correctly post-processed into a single reference frame.

Import using Import Template

Finally, the prepared resources will be imported and converted into an Orbit Mapping Run using an according to Import Template. The Import Template reflects exactly the structure of prepared resources, vehicle setup and used sensors.

Mapping Run

A single set of mobile mapping data, combining all resources of one collection effort, go mission, track, or session.
Any combination of supported mobile mapping resources can be imported using it's according to import template.

Multiple individual resources of different types (mesh, point cloud, geo-tagged photos, ortho, vector data, image data, trajectory) belong together because of the capturing/post-capturing process or the optimized delivery of a consumption pattern (city, county, year, survey).
E.g. a single data survey or merged delivery of all surveys for a city.


  • Organize
    A Run is the result of one import.
    At import, all resources are organized into one root folder. For each sensor or resource type, there is a dedicated subfolder.
    Manage Mapping Runs
  • Optimize
    At import, resources are optimized for performance and stored in Orbit's optimized native storage formats. Processing and optimizing resources require CPU and disk access. Access to storage is highly affecting processing speed. For best performance, it's recommended to read from one and write to another local or locally attached disk.
    After import CPU requirements are reduced to an absolute minimum for efficient and performant use of huge datasets on regular devices.
  • Coordinate System
    Any supported coordinate system can be used.
    It is recommended that all resources of a run do have the same coordinate system. If required CRS conversions can be applied upon import using a proper template configuration.
  • Size & Volume
    If runs are imported correctly, the length of trajectory or size of a single run is irrelevant to the performance in Orbit. There are no limitations on volume, size, or resolution of point cloud and imagery.


  • File access
    To import, process and use Runs direct file access is required by the Operating System User for Orbit Desktop products or for the Orbit Service user account for Orbit Publisher. Fast file access is required.
  • Permissions
    Runs are available for administrators only, no user permissions can be set.
    Don't worry if you are using a standalone product, you are the administrator.
  • Viewing
    There are no limitations on image nor point cloud viewing.
    The point cloud legend can be edited for both Map1) and Tabs2).

Group of Mapping Runs (Resource Group)

A list of Mapping Runs, a logical grouping without data duplication, for which permissions can be set.
All included Runs must have a similar structure of resources and coordinate systems.

Multiple resources of the same data type (mapping run, mesh, point cloud, geo-tagged photos, ortho, vector data, image data) belong together because of their consumption pattern. Resource groups can be dynamic, to support large (country-wide) mapping projects.
E.g. all mapping runs of an entity state for a given year.


  • Create
    Projects are pointers to a list of Runs known by Orbit. Runs can belong to multiple projects, see Manage Groups.
    For example grouping by geographical area, mapping project, date or year, … .
  • Coordinate System
    Run resources of the same type must have the same coordinate system. Convert CRS on import Run if required.
  • Size & Volume
    If Runs are imported correctly, there are no limitations on the volume nor size of Projects.
    Theoretically there is no limitation on the number of Runs combined by one Project, however, make wise decisions. Merging and optimizing Runs would be preferred instead of combining thousands of Runs into one Project.
  • Storage
    Projects are just pointer files and do not include data.


  • Permissions
    Administrators have access to projects and can set user permissions to restrict access to projects. In Client-Server and Publisher users have a well-defined role, and level of use.
  • Data matching
    Images and point clouds of all included Runs will be combined on the fly by resource type (trajectory, photo positions, point cloud) into a single master dataset.
    For example the entire combined project point cloud dataset will be used at all times for measuring, viewing, or overlaying on images.
  • Viewing
    There are no limitations on image nor point cloud viewing when having direct file access to the original Runs.
    The point cloud legend can be edited for Tabs3) only. It is not possible to edit the Project point cloud legend on the Map4) On the Map to original Run point cloud legend is used.
    If the desktop user doesn't have direct file access to Runs viewing Mapping Projects is restricted to imagery only. Point cloud overlay and point cloud measurements on images remain possible.
1) , 4)
Map 2D, Map 3D
2) , 3)
Mobile Mapping, UAS Mapping, Oblique Mapping
Last modified:: 2023/01/09 12:48