Airbus Defence and Space launches WorldDEM Digital Terrain Model, the New Bare Earth Elevation Model

- Digital Terrain Models (DTMs) based on WorldDEM are now commercially available
- WorldDEM DTM can be delivered for over 90 Million km² of the Earth’s landmass

Apr 14, 2015 -- Airbus Defence and Space has officially launched its WorldDEM Digital Terrain Model (DTM), a highly accurate standardized representation of bare Earth elevation that can be made available for any point on the globe. This addition completes the WorldDEM portfolio enabling Airbus Defence and Space to provide both surface and terrain elevation information, in support of global customer projects.

The WorldDEM DTM is derived from the WorldDEM product (Digital Surface Model) by removing all man-made features and vegetation. The unrivalled quality of the original WorldDEM product combined with a sophisticated editing process guarantees highly precise and consistent terrain information. While surface features (e.g. built-up areas, vegetation) are reliably removed, characteristic terrain features such as ridge lines or mountain crests are preserved.

The WorldDEM DTM provides an excellent foundation layer for a wide range of applications such as civil engineering (e.g. road design, Earth work calculation), the management of natural resources (e.g. flood modelling), mapping (e.g. derivation of contour lines) as well as military mission planning (e.g. vehicle trafficability analysis, 3D terrain visualisation).

WorldDEM is based on data acquired by the high-resolution radar satellites TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X, which started synchronous data acquisition in December 2010 and completed coverage of the Earth’s entire landmass twice over in mid-2013. The satellites covered more complex terrain areas with a third and fourth acquisition campaign to ensure consistent high quality and accuracy of the final product. WorldDEM provides the first global, single-source, high-precision Digital Surface Model and has established a new standard of global elevation models.


Fabienne Grazzini
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Quentin Hunstad 
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