Transmission ways missing

I am from India, Maharashtra State. Recently during Apr-May-16 400kV Kumbhargaon S/S commissioned near Nanded in Maharashtra, Cordinates for which are 19.020761, 77.407724. However nither Transmission Line ways to this S/S are visible nor the S/S. Is it possible for me to locate the ways using high resolution image from openstreetmap or otherwise by any other means. How?

I don’t understand what you mean by “high resolution images form openstreetmap”. OpenStreetMap is a database of points, lines, and their attributes. It contains no photographs, and the nearest to images are the bitmap approximations of the the contents of the database.

Certain aerial imagery has been licensed, by third parties, in particular Bing, for use as material to be traced to contribute to the database, but those images will not, normally include features that were only constructed last year.

If you want to use information on the transmission lines from the OpenStreetMap database, you will need to wait until someone, probably from Nanded Waghala, volunteers to survey and map them. Unfortunately, outside the rich Western countries, there seem to be few volunteers, even though GPS capable mobile phones are presumably widely used.

If you want to add them to the map, yourself, thankyou. However, you will need to do your own survey, e.g. by walking under the lines with a GPS receiver, or by visually associating the course of the lines with features that are old enough to appear on the imagery that has been licensed for use on OSM. I’m assuming that the Indian or Maharashtran governments haven’t published mapping with suitable licenses, as I think it unlikely that they have. Similarly I’m assuming that the power company hasn’t licensed such maps, which are not based on the government maps.(which I think is even less likely).

Whilst you are at it, it would be nice to have details of street names and public buildings added in Nanded Waghala. Although this is rather more work, it is quite easy, as all it really requires for the survey is some paper, a pen, and a pair of shoes, and you should have no difficulty gaining access.

You could, of course, add a map note. However, even in the UK, it can take over a year for a local mapper to act on these, and I suspect there just aren’t any local mappers in your area.

Thanks for such detail answer, but i am wondering how all other transmission lines (even of 132kV small lines too) are very correctly mapped. Certainly these lines are not mapped by surveying them manually and uploading GPS coordinate. There must be any other method by which power line get plotted automatically by using satellite imagery. It’s true that I my self may not do such plotting using satellite imagery but still I want to know how previous work of power lines even from remote Indian parts is available on openstreetmap; and if that is possible why 400kV lines of Kumbhargaon is not available presently. When it may get available.

They couldn’t be mapped from satellite imagery, but they could, theoretically, be mapped from aerial imagery. Most of the imagery is from aircraft, not satellites.

There is no way in which they should be being mapped automatically.

Could you please provide the way Identity for an example.

Unfortunately, some people are not very scrupulous about complying with copyrights and will copy from unsuitable sources, but you could try contacting the person associated with the changeset that created them, and asking them how they obtained the data, and, if they didn’t survey it themselves, where the permission to use the source data is recorded in the OSM supporting documentation.

I suspect we would appreciate knowing of any case where they were mapped from another map without explicit and documented permissions, so that the changes can either be removed, or the permissions properly documented.

I’m mapping “minor power lines” by hand. In Flanders the imagery from the Flemish government is good enough so you can use it in combination with pictures taken on the ground during a survey to position most poles.

Here are some ways available on OpenStreetMap 400kV Aurangabad Akola line (Part) 220kV Loni-Aurangabad 132kV Sillod-Soygaon Line

Not only Maharashtra but complete India (and also other parts of the world) available on internet,powerline380k,powerline400k,powerline420k,powerline750k,powerline765k,powerlinedchigh

I don’t know about legality of plotting these lines but they are useful for planning and I am requesting for adding a line and not removing the line. So anybody can guide me in this respect I will be thankful and it will be possible to contribute.

Mr. escada thanks for inspiring me by reporting your work; it is also necessary to map minor power lines too as you are doing. Once I can understand plotting major lines I/my friends may go for minor lines.

All the Indian examples you quote have been mapped by one user, Oberaffe, who seems to specialize in power lines, but does not give adequate source information. I can’t say what that user’s motives are, but there are some people who who think mapping a particular sort of object is much more important than copyright integrity, so I would want these objects properly sourced, to prove that is not the case.

The volume of his edits and the fact that he appears to be German, not Indian, makes me think that he is not surveying them himself, and it would not be possible to be sure of the line voltage from aerial imagery.

Regarding your more general question, as OSM is crowd sourced you can never be sure that someone will not damage the map, especially in an area, like India, where there is little interest from local people, and errors could go unnoticed for decades. However, to get power lines properly mapped, you need to survey them yourself, possibly in combination with aerial imagery, or you need to find a source of information that is licensed in a way that is compatible with use by OSM.

Some Western governments will licence some or all of the data that they paid for in this way. When they do so, the licence normally requires attribution, to at least the country. Those attributions need to made available in a way that fulfils the licence terms, which generally means each such set of licence terms has to be approved, and the OSM contributor information has to explicitly name the licensor.

I don’t know what the situation is in India as regards such government data licences.

It should also be note noted that the real ownership of the data may be the power company. If the Indian power distribution company is privatised, it may be rather less willing than the government to licence such data on suitable terms. Government data licences often contain weasel words about only licensing the part of the data that the government owns. You will probably have to do your won research on the Indian government’s view on on open data.

(I have assumed that the primary source of mapping in India is the government. Mapping done by private companies is almost certainly going to be off limits.)

One other issue to consider, is that India has disputed borders. Power lines can be considered military targets, so there may be national security issues in mapping them any more accurately than you can assume a potential enemy has already mapped them.

To go back to the original question, there appears to be no current aerial imagery for the region around Kumbhargaon, either on Bing Sat or on Mapbox. So if it is a recently commission substation and transmission line, then it cannot be mapped from what we have. It might take some years for the imagery from these sources to be updated.

In response to certain other statements made above, of course it is possible to map powerline towers from such imagery. Their shadows are usually clearly visible, sometimes the towers themselves. Near Kumbhargaon there is a power line visible now, marked on OSM, and visible in the imagery.

As regards line voltages, this sort of data is likely to be from published sources. The use of these in bulk may be infringement, but often it is ‘fair use’, to use an American term; there is little point publishing such information on the internet otherwise. As for country comparisons, “even in the UK”, most powerlines are mapped with voltages but with no source information. No one seems to have worried about any infringement there either. Or perhaps the mapper climbed the tower and tested the voltage in person.

Source of authentic data is must as well as legality too. However as so many lines and power stations already are on the map hence now as a curiosity I wish to plot one more line.

The S/S is visible in current imagery file,77.4080735,711m/data=!3m1!1e3?hl=en

How to locate lines and upload them on OpenStreetMap can anybody help me.

You must not use Google maps as a source for OSM, and Google are unlikely to assist you in contacting their upstream data provider. As well as the restriction on the map, there is an explicit restriction in the Google terms of service about using their imagery for this purpose.

Google’s upstream source is most likely the Indian government equivalent of the British Ordnance Survey, with whom they will have a contract t use the data. I’m assuming the Indian government takes the more common position that state maps are copyright, rather than the US one that Federal maps are public domain (within the USA). If Indian government mapping is public domain, you would probably be better off going directly to them for the data.

PS on voltages, the pylons may well have warning notices giving the voltages, and if you know the voltage hierarchy in a country, you can probably deduce the voltage from the separation between the different phase conductors and/or the the insulators used.

I disagree about piecemeal additions of facts. This is one way in which Wikipedia and OSM differ. Wikipedia are happy that lots of coordinates are imported one at a time from Google, but OSM takes the view that you must look at the aggregate, which is the importation of a substantial part of the database, which is an action controlled by copyright law. Nearly every website has a legal notice reinforcing copyright and often attempting to be more restrictive.

As a point of history, the enabling technology for OSM was personal GPS devices, and early mapping was only by on the ground survey and GPS. This allowed it to break the commercial monopoly on mapping. Since then various deals have been arranged for access to aerial imagery, and governments have adopted open data policies.

Here is the 400 kV substation. On Bing it’s still a construction site.

This there a particular reason why there are 2 substations next to one another, instead of 1 ? (e.g. different operators)

Take a look at for additional tags, e.g. voltage

You could also add stuff such as landuse=industrial and barrier=…

From aerial imagery I could see two different switching fields.

They are not two s/s. They are two voltage levels of the same s/s.
By the way I have located the required s/s and also traced the 400kV line to that s/s. I also down loaded JOSM and it is working fine on my computer. Shortly I will learn JOSM and from manually traced path coordinates will be able to map my required line on OSM. However what I have noticed that though it is easy to trace 400kV line manually it is not possible to trace 132kV lines. Now can anybody help me in this regard. Thanks in advance.

Which aerial imagery are you using then ? Since you wrote yourself that it is still a construction site on Bing… Mapbox shows the same situation. Please do not use Google (which BTW seem to show a common fence for both areas)

I wonder whether different “fields” means you have to map 2 substations. Is it not possible for 1 substation to consist of different fields ? After all, you map a substation, not a field in a substation with the tag “power=substation”.

Since there is no any other way of contacting which I knew; I am writing this here.

Thanks Oberaffe

For contributing so many electrical lines on OpenStretMap. Though I don’t know your purpose for adding them I consider that as the lines are made available on Open Source, data of this lines can be used by me. I am working in electrical transmission field and know the importance of availability of such data. I also want to contribute but don’t know how to add the lines which are not added by you. (They are very few and may be recent). It is possible to add 400kV lines if image available on google or bing. But it is not possible to trace 132kV or 220kV lines. Is there any way to trace such small lines. Is high resolution imagery available any where. Please help me in this regard.

You could contact the user via a changeset comment, e.g. here or via his/her OSM account, and use “Send Message” there.

Hi Vasekar,

I was on a business trip for a week and couldnt read this before.

I can not add the full 400kV transmission lines but partly is it possible. There are a lot of towers in mapbox and Bing visible and I traced all that I found. (Mapbox is a bit newer) In case of newer arialviews I will trace the missing parts.

Google Background Images are not allowed in OSM and I think Google is blocked inside the JOSM code.

The voltage level you can find out by measuring the clearance inside the substations. They are normed in India. Josm has a nice measuring tool.
Smaller voltage levels are also easy to map, but without a aerial view is it impossible to trace the lines. (You have to wait)

If you are onsite. Please find out the position of the remaining towers and the correct name of the SS. Feel free to add self all the data.

Best regards

Thanks Oberaffe sir,
But now I am curious to know something about how you could plot the 132kV lines; because any imagery (Bing or Mapbox too) does not help in tracing out the path for 132kV lines. Obviously I have tried using my Laptop as well as Desktop having screen resolution 1024x768 pixel. Still I have same question in my mind. Whether high resolution imagery available with from any other site? If you fill comfortable please give any brief idea about how you have plotted nearly all 132kV lines? Now it is only for academic interest.

Hi Vasekar,

if you look here: ( the 132kv line in north)

You can easily see the towers. I can not remember which aerial view I used. But mostly BING.
On some places its very hard to see the lines/ towers. But then you can aproximate the position. Furthermore is it possible that Bing has now a new aerial view picture but the angle of the picture is different and its impossible to locate now the tower. I use 2560x1440 resolution to find the towers / shadows of the towers. The resultion is very helpful to find the next tower in the line. If you have further questions please write me inside OSM.

Best regards