I'd like to process multiple sets of old (>1938) aerial imagery that are scanned, but whether merged nor georeferenced. While I had good results with QGIS to align single photos, using passpoints, this doesn't scale for all the tiles and lacks preprocessing steps:

  • remove film-frame
  • align all photos to each other
  • choose / combine overlapping areas
  • composite and color adjustments
  • georeference using passpoints + global coordinates

Is there any free / open source toolchain, that can deal with all that?

A user-interface as huginn would be brilliant, but CLI + tutorial could do the job. My approach would be to use GIMP to create a single image (incl. preprocessing), align it using QGIS and create the final GeoTIFF. While the results are only for visual compare and will be embedded within an WMS, I don't need the highest accuracy and would preffer an solution that I can use with my limited knowledge in raster processing. Rectifieng the result is not required.

Unfortunately I don't own the calibration-infos for the cameras, so tools as MicMac doesn't seem to work. The Orfeo toolbox seems to be focused on detecting passpoints and perform the feature analysis :-/

2 Answers 2


To make it short, I didn't found an proper open source solution. Some overview:

  • GRASS GIS - has all support, but different docs are confusing and tool is to complex
  • orfeo Toolbox - designed for working with camera sensors, doesn't seem to work, if calibration is unknown
  • OSSIM - no current binary release, old ones doesn't seem to work
  • Mic mac - needs calibration data, writing config files by hand, seems to be unusable to me

I was glad and got support by an university collegues who has licensed an commercial application that worked pretty well.


Some updates: I used WebODM by OpenAerialMap, which worked fine. Only defining GroundControllPoints was not that straigtht forward and took some work. Results are pretty, without further adjustments

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