Applicable plans
Valley Mountain Peak


You want to create an interactive 3D terrain using an elevation model and/or an orthophoto that consist of tiles


  • Large images or elevation models are cut in tiles by a regular grid to keep the data manageable. 
  • Typically the tiles that belong together have the same base name followed by their position in the tiling scheme (column and row). 
  • For example, ortho_LummenTurbine_2012_6_2.tif is a tile located in the 6th column, 2th row and belongs to the ortho_LummenTurbine_2012 tiling scheme.

NOTE: Tiles are not the same as images acquired with an UAV. Images obtained with an UAV need to be processed in a photogrammetry package to an orthophoto and an elevation model. Tiles are an output of this process.

Creating a terrain

  1. To create a terrain from tiles simply proceed the same way as you would load a single file in TerrainCreator.

  2. Click the browse icon and select all the tiles you want to include in your terrain.

  3. Click Open and your tiles will all be added in the Input image or Input elevation information box.

  4. Virtual Surveyor will display your data as one seamless dataset after the terrain has been created,


TerrainCreator will validate if all tiles belong to the same tiling schema and will check for:
  • file extension, 
  • resolution, 
  • coordinate system. 

If an inconsistency is discovered, TerrainCreator shows an error icon and you will not be able to create the terrain until you resolve the issue. Hovering over the error icon will show a tooltip that will help you resolve the inconsistency.

Missing tiles

  • If image image tiles are missing, they will be replaced by the NoData values which is black for an orthophoto.
  • If elevation tiles are missing, they will be replaced by a value close to the minimum elevation for a digital surface model.