ETRS89 Transformation

The transition from the German cadastral management to ETRS89 as of 2009 has far-reaching consequences for users and their GIS databases. Utility companies’ asset data has to be transformed into the same system. TRAFO89 supports the entire transformation process using external transformation software and without having to migrate data.

  • Transformation of vector and raster data, dimensions, plot templates, ….
  • Transformation of coordinates without migration
  • Connecting external transformation software (Trabbi, …)
  • Hot switch for projecting databases
  • Post-processing of systematic effects

Product Description


The transition to the new ETRS89 reference system and the ALKIS solution doesn’t only present challenges to provincial cadastral management. Utility company departments responsible for documenting supply networks are one of the main geodata user groups who are confronted with a whole range of challenges. This includes questions regarding the status of the transition process of the supply area within cadastral departments as well as the technical and organisational execution of a company’s own transition. Furthermore, the effects of this transition have to be taken into account during work processes. The module ITS TRAFO89 by the ITS Service GmbH supports this technical transition of Smallworld databases using external cadastral management transformation software.


Smallworld GIS offers performant transformation functions for precise, real-time map projections. This precision lies within meters. A database transformation which takes cadastral reference points into account as well as saving the data in a Smallworld database is possible and enables a precision within a few centimeters. ITS TRAFO89 fills the gaps and transforms as well as stores data within sector-specific modules or other data models in the DHDN reference system, (Gauß-Krüger projection) ETRS89. All geoemtries of Smallworld objects within a database are inserted into an external transformation programme and displayed in a transparent file structure.

After the external conversion is completed, Smallworld objects receive their modified coordinates through an import. Finally, the coordinate system of the Smallworld database is transformed into ETRS89. Systematic affects of the transformation such as readjusting text rotations are possible in separate processes within Smalldworld GIS.


Advantages of this process are:

  • Maximum transparency in every step of the transformation
  • Easy data migration
  • Topologies and relationships remain intact
  • Directly connecting external transformation programmes meaning that transformation methods (programme, control points, parameters) of cadastral offices can be used to carry out millimetre-precise transformations
  • High transformation scalability by separating databases


Step by step, ITS TRAFO89 guides the user through the transformation process:

  • Selecting a Smallworld Database
  • Exporting geoemtry coordinates in a transparent file structure
  • Calculating the transformation using an external transformation programme conform to cadastral offices
  • Import and transformation of calculated geometry coordinates in Smallwolrd GIS
  • Hot Switch for database coordinate system in Smallworld GIS
  • Automated editing tools for systematic effects (e.g. text rotations) in Smallworld GIS


ITS TRAFO89 is a central component for carrying out the transformation into the ETRS89 reference system. Due to the complexity of the entire project, it is advised to conduct a preliminary test project to examine the systematic and organisational effects of the transformation. The ITS Group offers the necessary support in this field. With our Geo-IT Services we can assist you during the execution phase.

Due Dilligence

The following key assessments should be carried out in a preliminary project:

  • Transformation programme and method
  • Defining fields with support points
  • Extrapolating runtimes
  • Planning the operational start
  • Adjusting applications (data model, functions, interfaces)
  • Post-processing and editing