To go a little bit further than the semantic question regarding DEM/DTM/DSM, I'd like to know if there is a free (of charges and use) DTM datasets? And what about resolution?

As far as I know,only DSM are available to public for free.


3 Answers 3


For a list of sources, see also here: http://grass.osgeo.org/wiki/Global_datasets


If you are in the UK there is the Ordnance Survey Land-Form PANORAMA dataset that is available as part of OS OpenData. It is available as a DTM or as contours. The DTM is designed for use at a scale of 1:50,000.

For more information, use the link below:


  • Hi James. Thanks for that information. Unfortunately, I live in France and IGN did not yet release its DTM for free - the free release of the BD ALti is minimum 250 m resolution. It takes time, but they are on a good way ...
    – simo
    Commented Feb 3, 2011 at 18:08

Unsure of your location, but you may want to try the USGS if you're in the US. I think resolution is variable based on location, but you may find something of use here:



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