72741 - Cartography and Spatial Data Management

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Sustainable cities Climate Action Life on land

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

The course aims to examine in depth the aspects of classical and digital cartography and provides elements related to the modern geomatic techniques for the monitoring, representation and analysis of the territory. The Geographic Information Systems are introduced and the current techniques for surveying and processing data for cadastral purposes are described.

Course contents

The Topography and Cartography course provides the basic elements of Geomatics, treating in a modern way the techniques of terrestrial and spatial positioning, photogrammetry, laser scanning and numerical cartography. In integration with the theoretical lessons, practical exercises are organized, to make the student able to perform topographic-photogrammetric surveying operations using the latest generation instruments and to process the acquired data in the lab.


Theoretical bases of cartography: the general problem of cartographic projection; types of projections; classification of maps; deformations in a cartographic map; the concept of scale and error in a map; Gauss conformal projection and correspondence formulas; Italian cartography; The UTM-UPS system; The Gauss Boaga system.

Introduction to laser scanner: classification of laser systems; the LIDAR system; the mobile laser scanner; fields of application of laser systems.

Introduction to photogrammetry: historical information and the transition from analogue to digital photogrammetry; the central projection and the equations of collinearity; the design of an aerial and terrestrial photogrammetric survey; examples of final products obtainable by photogrammetry. The photogrammetric process: classical phases; distortions in a frame; the internal orientation with the correction of the image coordinates. The external orientation of a photogrammetric block; precision in the photogrammetric restitution in the normal case.

Digital photogrammetry. Digital images: radiometric and geometric resolution. Methods for Stereoscopic Digital Vision. The Image Matching. The digital orthophoto. Errors in a frame. Photoplans and Orthophotos. Resampling of a digital image.

Numerical cartography: methods for the production of numerical cartography; restitution and vectorization; vector files and raster files: formats and characteristics; georeferencing a digital image.

The Geographic Information Systems.

The theoretical lessons are integrated with practical exercises using free and open source software QGIS.


Scientific publications, lectures notes and slides in digital form.

Bibliographic references for home study and further reading materials:

Kraus, K., 1998. Fotogrammetria vol.1 Teoria e applicazioni. Editore: Levrotto e Bella. ISBN: 888218028X.

Folloni, G., 1982. Principi di Topografia.

Migliaccio, F., Carrion, D., 2016. Sistemi Informativi Territoriali. Principi e applicazioni. UTET Università Editore. EAN: 9788860084750.

Teaching methods

Lectures and exercises in Laboratory or on personal computer using Open-Source software.

Analysis and discussion using examples of real cases.

Assessment methods

The final exam verifies the acquisition of the expected knowledge and skills by carrying out a written and oral test, without the help of notes or books.

Following the national emergency state of 31 January 2020 and the issuing of D.L. February 23 2020 n. 6, containing urgent measures regarding the containment and management of the epidemiological emergency from COVID 19, and in order to give continuity to the verification processes, the exam can be taken at the students' homes in online mode.

Before making the test, it is necessary to install software on your phone that can produce pdf files such as CamScanner (https://www.camscanner.com/) or TapScanner (https: //tap-scanner.it.aptoide. com / app).

The written test consists of two open questions.

The test must be carried out within the indicated time range. From the moment of the beginning it lasts 70 minutes.

The student must answer the questions by writing with a pen or marker on white sheets. Each sheet must be numbered and must have the candidate's name, surname and registration number.

At the end of the test the student must produce a scan of every single written sheet with his mobile phone. The scans must then be uploaded as answer to the questions.

The oral exam will be held at the end of the written test in alphabetical order.

At the time of the test, students must have an identification document (Identity Card or Driving License or Passport) and a badge, and show them to the examiners. In addition, the aforementioned documents must be scanned before the test, so the candidate has a pdf file available with the scan of a document and badge (scan both sides). This pdf must be uploaded together with the pdf of the answers to the questions.

In order to take the exam, it is necessary to have all the tools listed below:

  • a stable internet network;
  • a desktop or notebook (hereafter PC) connected to the electricity network and to Internet.
  • a smartphone or tablet (hereafter mobile device) connected to the electricity network and to Internet, equipped with a video camera, which will be used as a recognition and means of control by the examiners inside the Virtual Classrooms
  • the ZOOM app that allows video meeting and access to the virtual classroom must be installed on the mobile device;
  • white sheets and a pen.
  • the possibility of using a quiet environment in one's own home, free from other people and correctly lit, in which to set up a space with the elements listed above.

The oral exam consists of an in-depth study aimed at ascertaining the acquired knowledge. Passing the exam will be guaranteed to students who demonstrate mastery and operational ability in relation to the key concepts illustrated in the course.

Teaching tools

The course includes exercises in laboratory or on personal computer to complete and deepen the acquired theoretical knowledge.

Office hours

See the website of Valentina Alena Girelli