I currently have X amount of binary files that are in grid format.

I have the span of these files in the form of latitude/longitude, plus the geographic projection. How can I turn these into georeferenced geoTIFFs/HDF/netCDFs?

For reference the latitude span is -60 to 60, and the longitude span is 85 to 205.

Data is projected in EPSG:4326.

  • Can you use python? By binary grid do you mean .adf format or .bil/bsq/raw? How do you have the span information? Is it a table or part of the file name etc. Jul 27, 2017 at 21:13
  • I can use Python (and have been). For reference, it can be processed using numpy.fromfile().reshape(). Jul 27, 2017 at 21:14
  • As for format, I'm not sure. It's more like .bin. The span is given as outside information. Jul 27, 2017 at 21:14
  • You can embed a known georeference if you have the origin (upper left) and extent, divide the dX by cols to get X cell size and dY by rows to get Y cell size then use SetGeotransform() (y is usually negative) like on this page pcjericks.github.io/py-gdalogr-cookbook/raster_layers.html (ctrl + f for setgeo). What is the raster? According to GDAL docs it could be ENVI - ENVI .hdr Labelled Raster, (is there a .hdr file?) but was the data geographical or projected when the georeference was lost? Jul 27, 2017 at 21:20
  • 1
    EPSG:4326 is a geographical spatial reference (units: degree) so is unprojected. Projected data would have units: feet or metre. If the data was projected when it lost its georeference you would need to apply a projected GeoTransform or the data will not be accurate even though you have your extent and origin in degrees, you would need to generate the corners, project and build a GeoTransform from those coords. Jul 27, 2017 at 21:28

1 Answer 1


This is how I ended up solving it:

cols = array.shape[1]
rows = array.shape[0]
originX = 85 # starting longitude, top left
originY = -60 # starting latitude, top left
driver = gdal.GetDriverByName('GTiff') # load the GTiff driver
outRaster = driver.Create(fileName, cols, rows, 1, gdal.GDT_Int16) # create the raster layer
outRaster.SetGeoTransform((originX, pixelWidth, 0, originY, 0, pixelHeight))
outband = outRaster.GetRasterBand(1)
outband.WriteArray(array) # write the binary file to the TIFF
outRasterSRS = osr.SpatialReference()
outRasterSRS.ImportFromEPSG(4326) # import the EPSG projection
outRaster.SetProjection(outRasterSRS.ExportToWkt()) # sets the projection for the tiff
outband.FlushCache() # flush the cache
  • +1 Can you include the calcs for pixelWidth and pixelHeight please. Jul 27, 2017 at 21:51
  • 1
    Values for pixelWidth and pixelHeight were given as 0.01. Jul 27, 2017 at 21:52

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