I am trying to apply a predictive model based on terrain to a geographic area. I am trying to do this using R and the package raster. The model was developed using GRASS, but I have a limited understanding of GRASS and thought it would make sense to learn how to do it using R. But the package raster currently lacks the functionality I'm looking for.

The model contains different properties of the terrain. Aspect and slope is no problems to calculate using the terrain() function. However, also tangential and profile curvature is included in the model, but those options are not available. I found a guide at R-bloggers (2012) giving examples of how to calculate curvature using “plan.curvature” and “prof.curvature”, but it seems like this function has been removed from the newer versions of raster. A Stackexchange post points out some principal problems of calculating curvatures, and I imagine that this might be the reason behind the removal of those functions.

However, even if there might be limitations of the method, I still need to apply it to the model I have. Is there any way of calculating curvature using the current version of the Raster package, or do I have to rely on an older version?

1 Answer 1


If you go the end of R-bloggers post, you get to "This is the code: DEMderiv Function"

By clicking on the link you get to the function (which was never part of the raster package).

  • Thank you. It was not my intention to use this forum to help me with basic reading, but I guess I was to stressed out to check the whole post. Just some reflections on the R-blogger post. The function provided in the post is not compatible with more recent versions of the Raster package. An old version of the package is thus still needed. In the original post there is an edited version of the function that I however could not get to work anyhow (r-video-tutorial.blogspot.se/2012/10/…).
    – Smerla
    Feb 28, 2018 at 15:00

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