Other than standard D8 are there support for multiple flow algorithms like FD8, DEMON, Dinfinity etc?

  • You might want to look at TauDEM. Commented Apr 16, 2013 at 14:33
  • Or Whitebox GAT.
    – traggatmot
    Commented Jan 4, 2015 at 2:32

1 Answer 1


The Flow Direction tool in Spatial Analyst only supports the D8 flow direction model, as stated in the How flow direction works page:

There are eight valid output directions relating to the eight adjacent cells into which flow could travel. This approach is commonly referred to as an eight-direction (D8) flow model and follows an approach presented in Jenson and Domingue (1988).

In addition, the Flow Accumulation and Flow Length tools only support D8 flow direction rasters as input.

Update 2018-01-17: ArcMap 10.6 and ArcGIS Pro 2.1 added support for two new flow models:

A new parameter, Flow direction type, allows you to choose between the original algorithm (D8), multiple flow direction (MFD), and D-Infinity (DINF). In the original D8 algorithm, all flow is directed to the one neighboring cell with the steepest drop in elevation. The MFD algorithm uses an adaptive technique that partitions the flow from a cell to all of its downslope neighbors. The DINF method determines flow direction as a single angle taken as the steepest downward slope on the eight triangular facets centered at each cell. The MFD and DINF methods can diverge flow into more than one downslope neighboring cell.

More information is available in the relevant Flow Direction tool documentation for ArcMap and ArcGIS Pro.

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