Thursday, February 20, 2014

Avoid jumping longitude at edges in matplotlib basemap (longitude wrapping)

Global line data is often jumping from one half of the globe to another.

To avoid this, we can split our lines into segments. Large jumps in longitude provide the indices where the line is split.

A possible algorithm could be:

#!/usr/bin/env python                                                                                
import numpy as np                                                                                   
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt                                                                      
from mpl_toolkits.basemap import Basemap                                                             

#create line that spirals from south to north around the globe                                                                                             
lons = np.linspace(0.,2000.,1000)%360.                                                               
lats = np.linspace(-80.,80.,1000)                                                                    
segment = np.vstack( (lons,lats))                                                                    

#create a global map that is centered around longitude "lon0"
fig = plt.figure()                                                                                   
m = Basemap(lon_0 = lon0,projection='robin')                                                                                         

#move longitude into the map region and split if longitude jumps by more than "threshold"
bleft = lon0-180.                                                                            
bright = lon0+180.
segment[0,segment[0]> bright] -= 360.                                                                 
segment[0,segment[0]< bleft]  += 360.
threshold = 90.                                                                                      
isplit = np.nonzero(np.abs(np.diff(segment[0])) > threshold)[0]                                                                                         
subsegs = np.split(segment,isplit+1,axis=+1)                                             

#plot the subsegments            
for seg in subsegs:                                                                                  
    x,y = m(seg[0],seg[1])                                                                           

Alternatively we can plot it as a LineCollection (add ax = fig.add_subplot(111) in the beginning):

#isplit = np.nonzero(np.diff(segment[0]) > threshold)[0]
segment[0], segment[1] = m(segment[0],segment[1])
subsegs = np.split(np.transpose(segment),isplit,axis=0)
line = LineCollection(subsegs,antialiaseds=(True,))

This is the result:

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