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A cartographic projection maps longitude and latitude pairs to x, y coordinates. As with Vega, one can use projections in Vega-Lite to layout both geographic points (such as locations on a map) represented by longitude and latitude coordinates, or to project geographic regions (such as countries and states) represented using the GeoJSON format. Projections are specified at the unit specification level, alongside encoding. Geographic coordinate data can then be mapped to longitude and latitude channels (and longitude2 and latitude2 for ranged marks).

For example, this example chart shows all airports in the United States by projecting latitude, longitude as x, y coordinates using the albersUsa projection.

See the example gallery for more examples with geographic projection.

Documentation Overview

Projection Properties

Property Type Description
type String | ExprRef

The cartographic projection to use. This value is case-insensitive, for example "albers" and "Albers" indicate the same projection type. You can find all valid projection types in the documentation.

Default value: equalEarth

center Array | ExprRef

The projection’s center, a two-element array of longitude and latitude in degrees.

Default value: [0, 0]

clipAngle Number | ExprRef

The projection’s clipping circle radius to the specified angle in degrees. If null, switches to antimeridian cutting rather than small-circle clipping.

clipExtent Array | ExprRef

The projection’s viewport clip extent to the specified bounds in pixels. The extent bounds are specified as an array [[x0, y0], [x1, y1]], where x0 is the left-side of the viewport, y0 is the top, x1 is the right and y1 is the bottom. If null, no viewport clipping is performed.

fit Fit | Fit[] | ExprRef
parallels Number[] | ExprRef

For conic projections, the two standard parallels that define the map layout. The default depends on the specific conic projection used.

pointRadius Number | ExprRef

The default radius (in pixels) to use when drawing GeoJSON Point and MultiPoint geometries. This parameter sets a constant default value. To modify the point radius in response to data, see the corresponding parameter of the GeoPath and GeoShape transforms.

Default value: 4.5

precision Number | ExprRef

The threshold for the projection’s adaptive resampling to the specified value in pixels. This value corresponds to the Douglas–Peucker distance. If precision is not specified, returns the projection’s current resampling precision which defaults to √0.5 ≅ 0.70710….

rotate Array | Array | ExprRef

The projection’s three-axis rotation to the specified angles, which must be a two- or three-element array of numbers [lambda, phi, gamma] specifying the rotation angles in degrees about each spherical axis. (These correspond to yaw, pitch and roll.)

Default value: [0, 0, 0]

scale Number | ExprRef

The projection’s scale (zoom) factor, overriding automatic fitting. The default scale is projection-specific. The scale factor corresponds linearly to the distance between projected points; however, scale factor values are not equivalent across projections.

translate Array | ExprRef

The projection’s translation offset as a two-element array [tx, ty].

If you want to explore the various available properties in more depth, Vega’s projection documentation hosts a useful demo

In addition to the shared properties above, the following properties are supported for specific projection types in the d3-geo-projection library: coefficient, distance, fraction, lobes, parallel, radius, ratio, spacing, tilt.

Note: All properties of projections are optional with defaults as defined in the Vega projection properties. Because of this, marks that don’t have explicitly defined projections may implicitly derive a projection. Implicit projections will be added for any geoshape mark, any encoding with field of geojson type, and encoding with latitude or longitude channels.

Projection Types

Vega-Lite includes all cartographic projections provided by the d3-geo library.

Type Description
albers The Albers’ equal-area conic projection. This is a U.S.-centric configuration of "conicEqualArea".
albersUsa A U.S.-centric composite with projections for the lower 48 states, Hawaii, and Alaska (scaled to 0.35 times the true relative area).
azimuthalEqualArea The azimuthal equal-area projection.
azimuthalEquidistant The azimuthal equidistant projection.
conicConformal The conic conformal projection. The parallels default to [30°, 30°] resulting in flat top.
conicEqualArea The Albers’ equal-area conic projection.
conicEquidistant The conic equidistant projection.
equalEarth The Equal Earth projection, by Bojan Šavrič et al., 2018.
equirectangular The equirectangular (plate carrée) projection, akin to use longitude, latitude directly.
gnomonic The gnomonic projection.
identity The identity projection. Also supports additional boolean reflectX and reflectY parameters.
mercator The spherical Mercator projection. Uses a default clipExtent such that the world is projected to a square, clipped to approximately ±85° latitude.
orthographic The orthographic projection.
stereographic The stereographic projection.
transverseMercator The transverse spherical Mercator projection. Uses a default clipExtent such that the world is projected to a square, clipped to approximately ±85° latitude.

Projection Configuration

// Top-level View Specification
  "config": {          // Configuration Object
    "projection": { ... },   // - Projection Configuration

The projection property of the config object determines the default properties and transformations applied to different types of projections. The projection config can contain any of the projection properties as specified above.