The Densify tool adds vertices to your survey items so that they better align with the underlying topography. The Densify tool only works on selected polylines and boundaries and can be found in the corresponding TOOLS tab for polyline and boundary.

Densify works by using an intelligent technique based on the form of the terrain (Break Points), by setting an interval (Regular), or by placing points at the lower elevations (Low-pass), typically between trees or shrubs.


Densify Methods and How They Work

Legend for the graphs below:

  • The orange line is the original polyline. 
  • The green line represent the polyline after the operation. 
  • Each dot represents a vertex.

Densify with Break Points

The Break Points method creates vertices based on elevation differences. This threshold is controlled by the elasticity value. The lower the elasticity value is set, the tighter the object drapes to the terrain. In the example below this elasticity is set to 0.25 meters. This means that no tolerance larger than 25 centimeters is allowed when adding vertices.

Densify with Break Points to create cross-sections across a road or a quarry where you have significant elevation differences.

Densify with Regular Interval

The Regular method creates a vertex at a user-specified distance along the selected item. In the example below this distance is set to 2.00 meters.

Densify with Regular Interval to create surveys along a road where you need to capture points at a regular distance.

Densify with Low-pass

The Low-pass method creates a vertex at the location of the lowest elevation within a user-specified distance along the selected item. In the example below this distance is set to 10.00 meters. This means that within each 10 meters interval along the item, the algorithm places a point at the lowest elevation.

Densify with Low-pass when the survey item goes across vegetation or man-made features.

Differences Between Densify and the To Terrain Feature

To Terrain

To Terrain is a related but different feature. To Terrain pushes vertices to the terrain but will not create additional vertices.

Tips & Tricks

  • You can still use the Edit Vertex tool on a densified survey item. Edit Vertex helps you add a specific point or adjust vertices as necessary.

Using Densify in a Workflow

Road Surveying

The Densify tool is very efficient for road surveying. In combination with the Section Lines tool, it allows you to quickly create cross-sections along any road. This method is demonstrated in 6 steps, shown in the video below.