I am wondering how I would go about padding the outside of a DEM raster with 0 values. Here's the scenario: I have a DEM and I have a feature class larger than the DEM footprint. I need the DEM to be larger than the feature extent in order to perform some extraction processes. Therefore, I'm hoping to pad the outside of the DEM with 0 values to fill it out to the correct size. See below for what the DEM and features looks like.

DEM and Feature Class

So far, I've tried to replicate the solution described in a previous post, but no luck. I manage to create the larger raster of 0s no problem, but when I try to use the "Plus" tool to add the two together, it only produces the original DEM. I'm not sure, but I believe it's because the DEM raster is a gradient (no attribute table). Below you can see the DEM and the larger raster (black) of 0 values that I'm trying to use. I can confirm that the 0 values raster is of the same coordinate system, cell size, and has been raster snapped.

Raster and 0 values

So this leaves me stumped.

How can I pad this DEM?


2 Answers 2


The 0 as background value might be a problem, try a more suitable no data value like -99999/+99999


After creating your 0 DEM, try the Mosaic to New Raster tool. You may have to convert your 0 Raster to a floating point grid. Add the 0 Raster first, then add the DEM. Set the mosaic mode to Last. This should produce a new raster with your DEM and the 0's on the outside.

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