Software Forum

Aerial Photo Scanning Questions

  • 11 Aug 2010 3:44 PM
    Message # 401006
    Hello all!

    I recently received a present of about 110 one foot square 40-year-old color transparency aerial photos of Bedford, and I'd like to scan them in and be able to use them with the GIS.  I'd like the end result to be something as useable as the aerial photos that I have already, which are three MrSID mosaics that cover the entire town.  I'm also hoping that I can do as much of this myself, with software I either have or can get for free (of course!).  I'm wondering about the steps I could take to do this the best way possible, so I decided to consult the rest of the community in the hopes that you all might have some advice to impart.

    I have a color scanner, so at least that part's all set.  I'm planning to scan the photos in as .tifs, hopefully in the highest quality that I can.  I poked around in ArcCatalog for a little while, and found that while I can convert .tifs to MrSID files, I don't have the correct license available to mosaic them, and even if I did I'm apparently limited to a total size of 500 MB.

    So, I guess some of my questions are:  should I scan these as .tif files?  Should I georeference them before or after I convert them to MrSID?  Is there free and/or easy software out there that I can use to create a MrSID mosaic?

    Thanks in advance!
  • 20 Aug 2010 11:38 AM
    Reply # 406098 on 401006
    Chris Nelson wrote:Hello all!

    I recently received a present of about 110 one foot square 40-year-old color transparency aerial photos of Bedford, and I'd like to scan them in and be able to use them with the GIS.  I'd like the end result to be something as useable as the aerial photos that I have already, which are three MrSID mosaics that cover the entire town.  I'm also hoping that I can do as much of this myself, with software I either have or can get for free (of course!).  I'm wondering about the steps I could take to do this the best way possible, so I decided to consult the rest of the community in the hopes that you all might have some advice to impart.

    I have a color scanner, so at least that part's all set.  I'm planning to scan the photos in as .tifs, hopefully in the highest quality that I can.  I poked around in ArcCatalog for a little while, and found that while I can convert .tifs to MrSID files, I don't have the correct license available to mosaic them, and even if I did I'm apparently limited to a total size of 500 MB.

    So, I guess some of my questions are:  should I scan these as .tif files?  Should I georeference them before or after I convert them to MrSID?  Is there free and/or easy software out there that I can use to create a MrSID mosaic?

    Thanks in advance!
    You might want to check out Opticks (http://opticks.org).  It's free, and looks pretty high powered, though I haven't tried it for mosaicking or georeferencing.  I see a lot of the same functionality that LPS from Erdas offers.  If you can get a list of the locations of some of the fiducials values from the donor, then you'll be off to a really good start.  Let me know if you run into any problems - I'd be happy to see if we can figure it out.
    Nate
  • 24 Aug 2010 12:53 PM
    Reply # 407798 on 406098
    Nathan Moore wrote:
    Chris Nelson wrote:Hello all!

    I recently received a present of about 110 one foot square 40-year-old color transparency aerial photos of Bedford, and I'd like to scan them in and be able to use them with the GIS.  I'd like the end result to be something as useable as the aerial photos that I have already, which are three MrSID mosaics that cover the entire town.  I'm also hoping that I can do as much of this myself, with software I either have or can get for free (of course!).  I'm wondering about the steps I could take to do this the best way possible, so I decided to consult the rest of the community in the hopes that you all might have some advice to impart.

    I have a color scanner, so at least that part's all set.  I'm planning to scan the photos in as .tifs, hopefully in the highest quality that I can.  I poked around in ArcCatalog for a little while, and found that while I can convert .tifs to MrSID files, I don't have the correct license available to mosaic them, and even if I did I'm apparently limited to a total size of 500 MB.

    So, I guess some of my questions are:  should I scan these as .tif files?  Should I georeference them before or after I convert them to MrSID?  Is there free and/or easy software out there that I can use to create a MrSID mosaic?

    Thanks in advance!
    You might want to check out Opticks (http://opticks.org).  It's free, and looks pretty high powered, though I haven't tried it for mosaicking or georeferencing.  I see a lot of the same functionality that LPS from Erdas offers.  If you can get a list of the locations of some of the fiducials values from the donor, then you'll be off to a really good start.  Let me know if you run into any problems - I'd be happy to see if we can figure it out.
    Nate

    Thanks for the info, I'll definitely check it out.

    Unfortunately, our feed scanner puts a whole bunch of nice scratches in the photos when you scan them in, no matter how clean you get it (which is why I tried the warm-up photos in the collection first).  So, I'm going to do some research into buying a bed scanner versus just saying the heck with it and asking an aerial photo company to do it for me.
 

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