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Earth elevation suitable for 3D rendering?

Posted: Fri Jan 19, 2024 1:43 pm America/New_York
by joshklint
I am trying to determine the highest resolution data source I can use for Earth elevation / height maps. I can use a WMS, tile server, or whatever else exists, but the height data needs to be high-precision, as this will be used for 3D rendering in a game engine. I would expect the height data to be in 32-bit float, 16-bit float, or maybe a 16 or 32 bit unsigned integer pixel format.

I am expecting the projection method will probably be one where it wraps around the equator, up and down 60 degrees, and then uses two flat projections for the north and south poles.

I am looking for something with multiple resolutions if that is available, otherwise it is possible for me to create my own LODs if I have to.

What data source should I be looking at?

Re: Earth elevation suitable for 3D rendering?

Posted: Fri Jan 19, 2024 3:01 pm America/New_York
by LP DAAC - jwilson
@joshklint You can find elevation data on the Land Processes (LP) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) website. I ran a quick search with results returned that may suit your needs here: https://lpdaac.usgs.gov/product_search/?keyword=Elevation&spatial_resolutions=15.0&spatial_resolutions=25.0&spatial_resolutions=30.0&tools=NASA+Earthdata+Search&view=cards&sort=title&page=1

Click on each data set for additional characteristics details. The associated tools can be found under each data set for easy search and download tools.

Another source you might want to look at is USGS GMTED2010. It has 30-, 15-, and 7.5-arc-second spatial resolutions for most of the Earth: https://www.usgs.gov/centers/eros/science/usgs-eros-archive-digital-elevation-global-multi-resolution-terrain-elevation

Please let me know if you have any questions.
Janice

Re: Earth elevation suitable for 3D rendering?

Posted: Fri Jan 19, 2024 3:42 pm America/New_York
by joshklint
This data set only covers 84N/56S:
https://www.usgs.gov/centers/eros/science/usgs-eros-archive-digital-elevation-global-multi-resolution-terrain-elevation

It appears to be using a cylindrical projection, which is unusable near the poles.

Re: Earth elevation suitable for 3D rendering?

Posted: Tue Jan 30, 2024 10:00 am America/New_York
by LP DAAC - dgolon
@joshklint The LP DAAC does not distribute one dataset that will meet all of your needs. I am not aware of an elevation dataset in general that will meet everything you need but you might be interested in https://www.pgc.umn.edu/data/arcticdem/ and https://www.pgc.umn.edu/data/earthdem/.

We will leave your question open to the science community to see if anyone else has a recommendation.