Digital models of topographic elevation data form an integral part of geographic information systems (GIS) and are most often used for (1) hydrological modelling including flood simulation, delineation and analysis of watersheds and drainage networks, (2) soil erosion and sediment transport modelling, (3) delineation and study of physiographic units, (4) soil and ecological studies, (5) geomorphological evaluation of landforms, (6) civil engineering and military applications such as site and route selection, landslide hazard assessment, visibility analysis (viewshed analysis), and (7) remotely sensed image enhancement for 3D analysis. Groundwater and climatic models also use digital topographic data as essential components. Digital elevation models provide an opportunity to characterise quantitatively land surface in terms of slope gradient and curvature and yield digital terrain information not blurred by land cover features which is often a problem in stereo-aerial photograph interpretation and remotely sensed image analysis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Civil and Structural Engineering
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Earth-Surface Processes
- Computers in Earth Sciences