Application and Dataset

RCMRD offers access to the DATASETS AND MAPS that have been developed and shared online, using platforms such as apps portal, geoportal, open data site that are useful for accessing these spatial based products and services.

Servicing and Calibration

This section carries out calibration, servicing and repair of member States and private sector surveying and mapping instruments; Some of the equipments are total stations, GPS, theodolites etc



Surveying and Mapping

This section offers services that combine professional staff, state of the art equipment and software to ensure that we offer the full suite of Topographical surveying, Engineering surveying, Hydrographic surveying, Cadastral surveying, Control surveying and Training in Land survey related short courses such as GNSS Training, Total station training, leveling among others.

Surveying or land surveying is the technique, profession, and science of determining the terrestrial or three-dimensional position of points and the distances and angles between them. These points are usually on the surface of the Earth, and they are often used to establish maps and boundaries for ownership, locations like building corners or the surface location of subsurface features, or other purposes required by government or civil law, such as property sales. Surveyors use equipment like total stations, robotic total stations, GPS receivers, retroreflectors, 3D scanners, radios, handheld tablets, digital levels, subsurface locators, drones, GIS and other surveying software.

The main disciplines of surveying are:

  • Land surveying.
  • Engineering surveying.
  • Mining surveying.
  • Hydrographic surveying.
  • Geodetic surveying.
  • Photogrammetry and remote sensing.

Land surveying: Land surveying involves measuring and determining property boundaries, which are used as the basis for all property transactions including buying, selling, mortgaging and leasing. Due to the importance of having a secure and strong property market, in Kenya a land surveyor needs to be licensed to be able to carry out a land survey.

Engineering surveying: Engineering surveyors are engaged in the construction industry and ensure construction works are built in the correct location and as per their design. They are generally found on construction sites setting out various types of works such as buildings, roads, bridges, tunnels and various other forms of infrastructure.
Mining surveying: Mining surveyors are involved in the development and construction of mining operations and can generally be found above and underground taking measurements to determine volumes and setting out new excavations and tunneling.

Hydrographic surveying: Hydrographic surveying involves locating and measuring points under the sea and on the shore. There measurements are used to design infrastructure such as docks and jetties as well as ensuring ships have enough clearance from the sea bed to safely travel around the world. Using sonar scanners they are able to provide a picture of the sea bed without needing to get their feet wet and enabling the discovery of ship wrecks and other objects lost at sea.

Geodetic surveying: Geodetic surveyors are involved with undertaking very precise measurements to determine the shape and size of the world and track the movement of continents. Their measurements are used in the monitoring of sea level rise, earthquakes, and the tracking of satellites. Geodetic surveyors are involved in the development of co-ordinate systems and datums which are used in the productions of maps and plans.

Photogrammetry and remote sensing: Photogrammetry and remote sensing involves taking measurements of the world via photography or other wavelength bands such as infra-red or ultra-violet. Measurements may be sources from aerial photography or satellite imagery. Photogrammetry and remote sensing is used to map large areas and determine changes in the world over time.

GIS and Cartography Section

GIS and Cartography Section aims at providing Geo-information services for sustainable development of the region in line with the theme of Technical Service Department which is “Mainstreaming Geo-information for sustainable development”. Through implementation of projects, a wide user community is reached that cut across policy makers, government ministries/departments and agencies; academic institutions, civil societies, private sector and research bodies. Activities implemented, help transform earth observation technology to policies that transform livelihoods. Products generated are inform of maps, geodatabases, geo-portals, bulletins, atlases and reports. Such products support evidence based decision making related to environmental resource management. Beyond projects, the Section is also engaged in training in applied geo-information services and advisory services to member states. Through capacity building and constant user engagement, GIS and Cartography remains relevant to emerging needs of the society. Main Activities of the Section include:

  • Improvement in GIS and geospatial database services through implementation of application projects;
  • Spearhead the use and application of GIS technology in various societal benefit areas at global, regional and local levels though training and application development;
  • Support member States in the development and implementation of spatial data standards, GIS mapping specifications and its corresponding metadata;
  • Provision of advisory services and technical support on the application and use of integrated GIS solutions and geospatial database services to member States;
  • Undertake research project on the new tools and open source software for GIS and spatial database development.


Figure 1: Enumeration area mapping: Population and Housing Census project, Malawi


Figure 2: Land degradation Assessment modeling: MESA Project, IGAD


Spatial Data Supply

The Database Management, Archiving and Dissemination Section/ Data Centre is responsible for managing the geospatial database of the Centre that includes acquisition, quality assessment, archiving and dissemination of data to both internal and external clients.

Spatial Data Supply
The RCMRD offers the following satellite imagery data products;

• High Resolution Satellite Imagery - Satellite image data with ground sampling rate below 5 meters (Pixel resolution) i.e. GeoEye, Worldview etc
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• Medium resolution Satellite Imagery - Satellite image data with ground sampling rate between 5 – 250 meters (Pixel resolution) i.e. SPOT imagery series, Landsat etc.
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• Low resolution Satellite Imagery - Satellite image data with ground sampling rate above 250 meters (Pixel resolution) i.e. MODIS
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Procedure for Data Acquisition
Clients can make data requests through emails (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), letters, walk-in, staff outreach, telephone, fax, calls for proposals, advertisements, etc. All inquiries/requests will be received at the Registry Office, registered, and forwarded to the office of the Director General with details including what they need, description (particulars), date, contact details etc.

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