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Van der Grinten I

Release 9.2
Last modified August 3, 2007
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This projection is similar to the Mercator projection except that it portrays the world with a curved graticule. The overall effect is that area is distorted less than on a Mercator projection, and the shape is distorted less than on equal-area projections.
Learn about the Mercator projection

Illustration of the Van der Grinten I projection

Projection method

The Van der Grinten I projection is a compromise projection and is not in one of the more traditional classifications.

Linear graticules

The equator and the central meridian of the projection.



Distortion increases from the equator to the poles.


Minimal distortion along the equator and extreme distortion in the polar regions.


Local angles are correct only at the center.


Scale along the equator is correct.


Can represent the world, but the most accurate representation is between the 75th parallels of latitude.

Uses and applications

Used for world maps—formerly the standard world map projection of the National Geographic Society.




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