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Aerial imagery

Spatial Services offers a range of aerial photography and other imagery of NSW for viewing and to purchase.

Aerial photos of your area or property

Spatial Services regularly captures aerial imagery of areas of the state and can provide:

  • imagery of most areas
  • from years between 1947 and the present
  • as prints or digital files that can be suitable for use in a computerised geographical information system (GIS).

Georeferenced and orthorectified photos

In order to use imagery in a GIS, it is necessary to georeference or orthorectify the imagery. To georeference something means to define its existence in physical space. That is, establishing its location in terms of map projections or coordinate systems. The term is used both when establishing the relation between aerial images and coordinates but also to determine the spatial location of other geographical feature.

Orthorectification removes distortions due to height, altitude of the aircraft and the terrain that has been photographed. This allows measurement to a precision in line with the scale of the photography.

Free viewing of SIX imagery

Using SIX Maps you can zoom into any portion of the state and see aerial imagery, property boundaries and streets, and other free online features.

Web Services

Spatial Services is now providing spatial data as web services. The web services have been released under open access licenses as part of the NSW Government Open Data Policy to support new and innovative uses of NSW Government information.

The web services allow users to access the most up to date information without having to store and maintain it in their own systems or applications. The web services can be used in multiple ways e.g. direct use, mashups, mobile apps and spatial systems.

Aerial images from the past

Aerial imagery provides a valuable source of information for studying, monitoring, forecasting and managing natural resources and human activities.

Obtaining aerial photos from different periods can be a useful way to research the history of an area or to verify different uses of land over time. Photos below demonstrate how Breakfast Point in Sydney has changed over a 60 year period.

image image image
1951 photo row of warehouses, small factories 1984 photo the site has been cleared 2004 photo housing (right), waterfront park (left)

You can make historical comparisons using SIX Maps.

For other timeframes and locations, you may need to purchase historical aerial photos.


To make an enquiry:

T: +61 2 6332 8287

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