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Is there any way to determine what the nodata value should be, in a set of geotiff images that do not have the 42113 tiff tag ?
I am trying to get elevation information, programatically in c++, and I have encountered areas that return a value of -1 (when I skim over the longitude/latitude points in Global Mapper, and I get to certain points the cursor seems to just skip over them and the elevation shows -1, jumping from something like 200 so I know the info is missing on that exact point).
I would like to have some way of determining an invalid value for the elevation/ nodata, but I haven't found anything in my searches. And I don't trust my assumption of -1 being bad data, since it can be a very reasonable elevation.
Thank you.

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It's likely (although this is purely a guess) that the minimum value found in any file would represent NoData. You could also check for high outliers, in case values like 10^38 or 2^15-1 are used for NoData codes. – whuber Jun 1 '12 at 15:02
That is true for one dataset that has a nodata field of -32767. This one has invalid data that returns -1 - which is unlikely to be the minimum. I don't want to change the content of the tiff images - I would like to write a nodata tag, but I can't be sure that -1 is really an invalid value unless I can find some other way (other than a tag, which is missing) to give me information about invalid values. I have searched the web - and all I found is that for that type of DEMs there seems to be a -1 offset... Not sure if this info helps me though. – Thalia Jun 2 '12 at 2:34
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I believe you have to look for the source of data. Different software use different nodata values. Once you know that, you can QGIS--> raster calculator to set that nodata value to your desirable nodata value.

If you don't have that information, you can look for outliers in a 3x3 or 5x5 window. But if you are working on built environment or values are close to -1 (say ranging from -5 to 50), then I think its not possible to look for nodata values.

Global mapper sets -32767 to nodata values. You can export your tiff as 32 bit floating point elevation values and look for -32767 also.

Best way is to check what nodata value is set by source.

Cheers N

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