I have an ESRI shapefile of the contours of my study area, and I want to convert it into a format that is acceptable by GMT, so I can make an elevation map of my study area. Is that even possible? Would it be easier, if I had a dem file, to convert it into gmt format?

Edit: I made a .dem file. How can I convert it to GMT acceptable type?


You might as well make a DEM/TIN (using ArcGIS) of the shapefile you have. That will give you the DEM you need to convert to GMT format.

After a quick Google search, I found a couple of links..

convert SRTM30 data to grd

Shapefile to GMT DEM file

Also check the this PDF, mostly after the 15th Page - GMT and Gridded Datasets

There is a clear cut procedure for convering the DEM data to GMT data. Conversion from shapefile to DEM is fairly simple, as you have already achieved it.

  • I made a *.dem file. Should I convert it to *.grid, to be able to use it at GMT? If so, how? – Fotini_M Sep 16 '14 at 2:29
  • Check the remodified answer. There a bunch of useful links (credits to Google) for the solution. Tick my answer if sufficient, else will help you out further.. – Akhil Sep 16 '14 at 5:31

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