ArcGIS Living Atlas

High resolution data updates to Living Atlas World Elevation Layers (March 2023)

ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World provides foundation elevation layers and tools to support analysis and visualization across the ArcGIS system. These layers get updated quarterly with high resolution elevation data from federal agencies, open sources, and the community maps program. Esri provides these datasets as ready to use services that benefit the GIS community and extend the use of data in new and innovative ways. In this release, world elevation layers are updated with a few lidar derived high-resolution elevation datasets.

Terrain and TopoBathy layers are updated with:

Let’s see a few examples highlighting the improvements.

Kowloon, HongKong – major improvements depicted with lidar derived 0.5-meter DTM in comparison to 24 meters WorldDEM4Ortho

improvements over Kowloon, HongKong

Ljubljana, Slovenia– details depicted with lidar derived 1-meter DTM in comparison to 24 meters WorldDEM4Ortho

improvements over Ljubljana, Slovenia

Berlin, Germany – details over urban area depicted with lidar derived 1-meter DTM in comparison to 24 meters WorldDEM4Ortho

improvements over Berlin, Germany

Hamburg, Germany – improvements over urban area depicted with lidar derived 1-meter DTM in comparison to 24 meters WorldDEM4Ortho

improvements over Hamburg, Germany

Halle, Saxony-Anhalt – improvements depicted with lidar derived 2-meter DTM in comparison to 24 meters WorldDEM4Ortho

improvements over Saxony-Anhalt

Wollongong, Australia – improvements depicted with NSW’s lidar derived 5-meter DTM in comparison to 24 meters WorldDEM4Ortho

improvements over Wollongong, Australia

These data updates will be rolled out to the world elevation tiled services – Elevation 3D (Terrain3D and TopoBathy3D) and Hillshade (World Hillshade and World Hillshade (Dark) ) by the end of next quarter.

To see the coverage extents of each source comprising World Elevation services, check out the Elevation coverage map.

You can help in improving these services by contributing high-resolution elevation data to Living Atlas of the World. To participate and learn more, check out the Esri Community Maps for Elevation program.

About the author

Rajinder has more than 19 years of experience in GIS and Remote Sensing. In his current role, he leads the community elevation program at Esri and has wide experience in cartographic visualization, image processing, databases and geo-processing. Rajinder has developed a multi-directional hillshade (esriurl.com/NextGenHillshade) algorithm to improve terrain visualization in Esri basemaps. He has also developed a fusion technique (esriurl.com/NAGIfusion) which maintains details and colors when integrating colored rasters with hillshades. Rajinder holds a Master of Science degree in Geoinformatics and a Bachelor of Science degree in Urban & Regional Planning.

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