Digital Elevation Model (DEM), which could be a Digital Terrain Model (DTM) or a Digital Surface Model (DSM).

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36
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7answers
28k views

What is the difference between DEM, DSM and DTM?

I am listing some of the acronyms used in our work and had to stop to think about whether to list these together or separately. In some circles they are synonymous, in others they have distinct ...
22
votes
3answers
4k views

How to smooth a DEM?

I have a SRTM DEM and I want to create a shaded relief from it. I created the shaded relief in GRASS and the result is very nice, but a little rough becouse the area is near flat and the DEM is 90m in ...
21
votes
4answers
2k views

How to calculate terrain Curvature?

I have an elevation raster and I would like to get some basic terrain variables, such as slope, ruggedness, aspect or curvature. The problem is that I don't seem to have the possibility to calculate ...
16
votes
4answers
5k views

What is the best colour-ramp to use for elevation?

This is maybe rather subjective as it concerns style, but I would like to have a few decent colour ramps for my DEM when it is layed over my hill-shading. I have created the Swiss hillshade model as ...
16
votes
2answers
656 views

Proper workflow for LAS to DEM conversion

I regularly come across LiDAR (.LAS) files with elevation data. When I do, I always struggle to find a way of converting them to a DEM for hydrological analysis. I have developed several workflows, ...
14
votes
13answers
21k views

How to a convert LiDAR XYZ files to DEM / DSM?

Normally consultants (LiDAR survey) provide me with data to my specifications; already in ESRI GRID or ASCII GRID format. This way LiDAR data can be easily used with ArcGIS. This time I only have xyz ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Good practice for generating contours from a DEM

We have just received a large set of DEMs at work and I would like to generate contours from them. The DEMs have a resolution of 1m and a size of 1kmx1km. Output from gdalinfo: Driver: ...
13
votes
1answer
378 views

Creating nanoscale DEM with GDAL

A bit of a strange question perhaps, but let me give you a breif explanation of the background before my actual questions: Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is a method that, in short (and to my limited ...
12
votes
7answers
570 views

How to generate a random but believable digital elevation model?

Is there a way to generate a DEM, programatically or otherwise (arcpy or R?), that will feed into ArcGIS for further spatial analysis? Perhaps this needs to be broken down into smaller incremental ...
12
votes
4answers
3k views

Shaded relief from DEM in GRASS and QGIS

I have been trying to get a good looking shaded relief model out of GRASS and Qgis for a day or so now and just can't seem to get it. The biggest problem I'm having is the valleys look like ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

comparing two DEMs

i have two Lidar las files, one is original let's say with X points. And the other is copy of the first las file but with Y points, where Y is less than X. Now, i wanted to compare how the Digital ...
12
votes
2answers
428 views

PostGIS interpolation / triangulation options

I'm looking for an open source workflow to automate DEM construction. We have a series of sites that fall within a LIDAR dataset. We want to create site specific DEM's for each site, and we're ...
11
votes
4answers
513 views

Dikes extraction from DEM

I do have DEM of 1x1 meter and original LiDAR point cloud in .las, that DEM is made of. I need to extract river dikes (highest points of the dikes) to vector feature (point, polyline). Any idea for ...
11
votes
5answers
6k views

Is it possible to make a DEM from contours in QGIS?

Is it possible to make a DEM from contours in QGIS? I have a shp file (contours) and their heights, can I use QGIS for produce a DEM without using GRASS? I find this creating a dem from contours but ...
11
votes
3answers
977 views

Detrending DEMs? - Removing the elevation trend over sloped surfaces (diagram included)

Is there a known methodology for removing the trend from a DEM surface? For example, if I had a DEM of a river, that river would flow from high elevation (upstream) to lower elevations (downstream). ...
11
votes
1answer
448 views

QGis raster terrain analysis - The curvature filter puzzles me

I am a french Master student at university Grenoble INP, and during my master project I have worked on DEM (raster) terrain analysis. Thus, I have read the source code of several QGis-1.7.4 raster ...
10
votes
2answers
986 views

Surface distance on DEM between two coordinates

Given two coordinates on a digital elevation model (DEM), how do I compute the actual distance traveled between the two locations, assuming a straight line route? How will changing the resolution of ...
10
votes
2answers
747 views

Is it possible to manually correct a raster DEM (OpenSource)?

Is it possible, to correct a raster DEM by changeing the raster-cell-values manually, like by "painting"? My DEM (ASTER) have one small error where the elevation is about 300m below the actual ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Code to calculate elevation profile along line from a DEM

Given a DEM (Digital Elevation Model) say in and a line (x1,y1) --> (x2,y2) (paired coordinates (x,y)), how can one calculate the elevation profile or cross-section projected on that line ? I am ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Are there any open source tools to detect and fill sinks on a DEM?

Are there any open source or inexpensive tools to detect and fill sinks on a DEM? ESRI Spatial Analyst is just out of my price range.
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Best method to aggregate 1m DEM mosaic to 10m DEM

I have a mosaic of a 1m LiDar derived DEM. I need to output a subset of the data as a 10m DEM. I am currently using the aggregate tool in ARCGIS 10 to produce a mean value for each new 10m pixel. ...
9
votes
2answers
541 views

Floodplain generation given river section polylines, flood level elevation points and a DEM of the land surface

I am looking to generate flood plain polygons to represent 20 and 100 year flood zones, in the most accurate and efficient way possible, given the following datasets: 1) River cross section polylines ...
8
votes
5answers
280 views

How to ensure uniform colour for DEMs?

This is a silly question, but one I've been trying to figure out for a while. I have two Aster DEM tiles, one next to the other. How do I ensure uniform colour for both?
8
votes
4answers
4k views

How to 'burn' a stream network into a DEM layer in ArcGIS 10?

I am working on a DEM that in an area where there is little relief. I would like to 'burn' the river network into the DEM so I can calculate flow accumulation and flow length accurately. I am using ...
8
votes
5answers
567 views

How to calculate the total ascent along a path

I am working on a series of footpath routes and have been asked if it possible to calculate the total ascent that a walker would have climbed if the travelled along each route? I know that it is ...
8
votes
2answers
212 views

DEM Elevation Units

I'm fairly new to the GIS world, and have a quick question. I'm currently using 10.1. I do not know much about rasters, so does transforming a DEM from one projection to another automatically convert ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

How to aquire a topographical map of Britain?

First of all, let me say that I know next to nothing about GISs. I'm trying to find / make / aquire a topographical map of britain. I want to use it as a height map in Dwarf Fortress so it needs to ...
8
votes
2answers
558 views

Elevation profile sample point algorithm

In generating an elevation profile, samples from the underlying raster must be taken. If the objective is to create a profile of maximum quality, how should the locations of sample points be ...
8
votes
3answers
849 views

Create DEM from stereo pairs?

Can ArcGIS Desktop (or any of its native extensions) allow me to create DEMs from stereo pairs (acquired by satellite, Geoeye 1)? If the answer is a clear no, brownie points will go to an answer that ...
8
votes
2answers
776 views

Extract the area of a DEM above where 60% of the region lies?

I have a DEM of a mountainous region. I'd like to extract the areas of the DEM above which 60% of the total DEM area lies. So, essentially I'd like to extract the areas representing upper portions of ...
8
votes
2answers
640 views

What software to use for making digital elevation models from UAV aerial imagery?

I have a an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV, also called a drone) and would like to use it to create a digital elevation model and orthomosaic over a smaller area (10 km2). My platform will be able to ...
8
votes
3answers
10k views

How to extract raster DEM elevations to vector attribute tables in ArcGIS 10?

I have an ArcMap 10 project with multiple layer groups. One layer is a raster DEM, another layer group is a bunch of vector shapefiles (including points, lines and polygons). The client wants all ...
7
votes
3answers
611 views

Creating raster or vector raster from DEM point file?

i have a point shape of 75.000 elevation points in a regular 5 m grid. We now want to create a polygon grid with the elevation points as "centroids". Unfortunately, all attempts to do so fail: I ...
7
votes
3answers
182 views

How to get the subbasin area of each specified river segment?

I have a DEM file of one district, and I have used those following tools in spatial analyst tools in ArcGIS 10.1 to get files related to the original DEM file: Fill Flow direction Flow accumulation ...
7
votes
2answers
744 views

What is the smallest contour interval possible when derived from a DTM?

I am converting a 2m DTM to contours, and would like to have the smallest interval possible. Is there a theoretical limit, or even a rule of thumb for defining contour intervals based on the ...
7
votes
1answer
770 views

Partially update a raster (a DEM)

My todays question is: How to update an .img DEM in ArcView 9.3? I do have DEM which need to be updated only if few parts. The area to be updated has been produced in separate DEM with Spline ...
7
votes
1answer
7k views

creating a dem from contours

I have a large set of contours that I received broken down into several different subsets. I have merged most of the subsets together creating a larger set of contours in three different files. I have ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Global DEM to Slope calculation

I have downloaded SRTM GDEM (~90 km resolution). I am using ArcGIS 10. I have tried to use spatial analyst to compute for slope. However, I can not compute for the slope. The output values has only ...
6
votes
2answers
653 views

What's a good toolchain to reproject some PNGs in plate carre to UTM?

I have some PNGs produced from Canadian DEM data. They're 1201px by 1201px heightmaps. Each one represents one quarter of a degree latitude and one quarter of a degree longitude. But I want to work ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

Is there an online tile-based elevation service?

I am working on an application that requires the elevation at a given lat/long coordinate for lots of closely spaced coordinates along any given irregular path. (The path is a trace of a ...
6
votes
6answers
650 views

How can I convert a DEM into areas of “flatness”, with an arbitrary fill/cut to area ratio?

I want to find areas of relative "flatness" in a DEM. How can I find flat areas? I want to find a neighbourhood of contiguous cells that have an elevation variance that is within a certain ...
6
votes
3answers
858 views

Generating a TIN from a DEM without ArcGIS

I'd like to generate a 3d terrain model moving from a DEM dataset (currently in shp and GeoTIFF format). As far as I understand it, the first step of the better path would be generating a TIN, but I ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

What is a good way to produce wire frame images from DEM?

As part of a project for a wind turbine assessment, I would like to make a wire frame image to compliment my Viewshed / line of sight and Photo montage. I have never created a wire frame image from ...
6
votes
2answers
720 views

FOSS method to split raster into smaller chunks

I have a raster (USGS DEM actually) and I need to split it up into smaller chunks like the image below shows. That was accomplished in ArcGIS 10.0 using the Split Raster tool. I would like a FOSS ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How to change DEM's gradient colour?

I'm a newbie about GIS. I'm from Italy and I've got a *.tif file of my region. I've loaded it has raster but I have a question: The dem has a gradient colour magenta. How change this colour to ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Can shaded relief be “blended” with DEM colour ramp in ArcGIS to produce a more visually dramatic result?

Not being able to use true transparencies with ArcGIS colour ramps where only solid colours are allowed has me always wondering about how to improve the look of the surface in my maps without ...
6
votes
3answers
997 views

How to find the elevation differences between adjacent pixels in ArcGIS?

Is there a way to determine what the difference in elevation is between two adjacent pixels? I am using an SRTM DEM to map faults. I am using the vertical error (>16m) as a criterion for the ...
6
votes
2answers
366 views

How to extract mountain peak points from a given digital elevation model?

For past couple of days, i m trying to determine how many mountain peaks are visible (line of sight) from a given location using POSTGIS. The data i have is DEM for Swiss and address locations from ...
6
votes
1answer
118 views

Split polylines in ramps

I have a shapefile (polylines) of some roads and I want to divide the roads in ramps. Ramp = a piece of the road delimited by the top of a hill and a valley. So, pretending that you're driving in ...
6
votes
1answer
514 views

How do I find least cost path over a DEM based on slope magnitude and direction?

What sort of algorithms can I use to find a least cost path through a DEM where it costs more to traverse a cell going downhill or uphill than it does to follow the contour of the land? All the ...