Take a look at some popular projection below.
Used for navigation or maps of equatorial regions. Any straight line on the map is a rhumb line (line of constant direction). The map is not perspective, equal area, or equidistant.
Used for perspective views of the Earth, Moon, and other planets. The Earth appears as it would on a photograph from deep space. Used by USGS in the National Atlas of the United States of America™.
Used by USGS in the National Atlas of the United States of America™ and for large-scale mapping of Micronesia. Useful for showing airline distances from center point of projection.
Used by the USGS in its National Atlas and Circum-Pacific Map Series. Suited for regions extending equally in all directions from center points, such as Asia and Pacific Ocean.
Based on the Albers equal-area conic projection, the AlbersUSA projection is made especially for the lower 48 states, and shows Alaska and Hawaii in the lower left-hand part of the map, where they of course are not actually located.
Used to represent the entire Earth in a rectangular frame. Popular for world maps. Looks like Mercator but is not useful for navigation. Shows poles as straight lines.
Uses tabular coordinates rather than mathematical formulas to make the world "look right." Better balance of size and shape of high-latitude lands than in Mercator, Van der Grinten, or Mollweide.
Used frequently in atlases to show distribution patterns. Has been used for maps of Africa, South America, and other large areas that are mainly north-south in extent
Used in atlases to show areas in the middle latitudes. Good for showing regions within a few degrees of latitude and lying on one side of the Equator.
The Natural Earth projection is a pseudocylindrical map projection designed by Tom Patterson. It is neither conformal nor equal-area.
Gerardus Mercator (1512-1594).
Descriptions used on this page come from the USGS unless otherwise noted.
Interested in learning more about projections? The USGS has a complete guide!