pythonishvili pythonishvili - 5 months ago 22
Python Question

Getting distance between two points based on latitude/longitude [python]

I tried implementing this formula: http://andrew.hedges.name/experiments/haversine/
The aplet does good for the two points I am testing:

enter image description here

Yet my code is not working.

from math import sin, cos, sqrt, atan2

R = 6373.0

lat1 = 52.2296756
lon1 = 21.0122287
lat2 = 52.406374
lon2 = 16.9251681

dlon = lon2 - lon1
dlat = lat2 - lat1
a = (sin(dlat/2))**2 + cos(lat1) * cos(lat2) * (sin(dlon/2))**2
c = 2 * atan2(sqrt(a), sqrt(1-a))
distance = R * c

print "Result", distance
print "Should be", 278.546


The distance it returns is 5447.05546147. Why?

Answer

It's because in Python, all the trig functions use radians, not degrees.

You can either convert the numbers manually to radians, or use the radians function from the math module:

from math import sin, cos, sqrt, atan2, radians

# approximate radius of earth in km
R = 6373.0

lat1 = radians(52.2296756)
lon1 = radians(21.0122287)
lat2 = radians(52.406374)
lon2 = radians(16.9251681)

dlon = lon2 - lon1
dlat = lat2 - lat1

a = sin(dlat / 2)**2 + cos(lat1) * cos(lat2) * sin(dlon / 2)**2
c = 2 * atan2(sqrt(a), sqrt(1 - a))

distance = R * c

print("Result:", distance)
print("Should be:", 278.546, "km")

The distance is now returning the correct value of 278.545589351 km.