How to Create KML Files for Mission Planning in Google Earth

Importing Keyhole Markup Language (KML) files onto your Phantom 4 RTK controller is a great way to complete your mission planning on a larger screen or with a stronger internet connection. 

File Requirements

The GS RTK app supports up to 99 boundary points through a KML file. If the KML file you created has more than 99 boundary points, you cannot plan or invoke missions. We recommend using as few dropped points as possible to prevent this error. 

We do not recommend using Trimble Business Center to create KML files for mission planning, as there are often too many boundary points for GS RTK to handle. 

If you already have a KML from Trimble Business Center, we recommend importing the file into Google Earth, retracing the boundary, and exporting the traced version to use for mission planning.

Creating a KML File in Google Earth

Create a polyline for linear flight missions and a polygon for area survey missions.

If you have imported multiple polygons as a single KML file, select each "layer" individually after tapping the mission Start button stage. This method works well on large sites where you may not have the time to survey the whole site each time, but you want a range of easy mission options without drawing them in manually. 

1. Open Google Earth and locate the mission area.

2. Define a polygon (2D photogrammetry) or path (linear mission planning) using the Google Earth tools. You can change the boundary points by clicking and dragging them. 

The order in which you drop the points will affect the mission start point. GS RTK will try to place the mission start point as close as possible to the second point of the KML file.

3. Save the polygon or path as a KML file.

I still can't do it!

We wrote these articles to equip you with everything you need to get the job done on your own, but we understand that sometimes this isn't sufficient.

If you're stuck, the Propeller hardware support team may be able to help. You can contact them by emailing