Posts Tagged ‘RMSE’

Comparación de DTM usando Global Mapper 17.0.1


Hagamos hoy algo sencillo, comparar, primero cualitativamente (visualmente) y después cuantitativamente dos DTM. Por un lado elegimos una fuente muy usual, SRTM de 3 arc sec (aproximadamente 90m) con un DTM derivado de Fotogrametría Stereo.

  • Comparación CUALITATIVA (i.e visual)
  • Comparación CUANTITATIVA (i.e RMSE)

Abrimos por un lado un DTM cuya fuente sea SRTM, en este caso me he conectado via WMS (Web Mapping Service) a través del data online disponible dentro de la misma aplicación Global Mapper (File/Download Online Imagery/data). La resolución es de aproximadamente 90m (3 arc sec).


Por otro lado he encontrado este DTM cuya fuente conozco (Stereo Photogrammetry). La resolución es de 5m.


A través de la herramienta ‘digitizer tool’ (Tools/Digitizer) seleccionamos una línea dibujada al azar sobre los dos. Botón derecho del ratón-> analysis/measurement/path profile. Exporto ambas imágenes (es importante en path setup definir un mismo mínimo y máximo para poder compararlas adecuadamente).

Con Photoshop superpongo (Layer display/ multiply) ambas imágenes y veo cuán diferente son.


Esto nos da una primera idea de la comparación, pero vayamos un poco más allá: ¿Cuál es el RMSE (Error medio cuadrático, Root Mean Square Error) entre ambas bases de datos?.


Esta es una medida de desviación que nos va a definir mucho más exactamente que una simple visualización. Podéis ver algo más desarrollado este punto en este link de esta misma página:


Ahora tan solo hemos de verificar que esta cifra sea la correcta teniendo en cuenta los valores de precisión prometidos en la entrega.

Espero que os haya resultado interesante, si así es, no olvidéis comentar, compartir o simplemente decir Hola. Cualquiera de estas opciones es apreciada.

Un saludo cordial,
MSc GIS and Remote Sensing


DTM validation using Google Earth (and RMSE extraction)


Hi guys,

Surfing the internet is great when you need to figure out something. I needed to validate some DTM from unknown sources against an also unknown source (but at least a kind of reliable one, Google Earth).

All we need is

  • Google Earth
  • TCX converter
  • ARcGIS
  • Excel

This is the procedure i have followed:

  1. First of all we draw a path over our AOI using Google Earth, we save this as KML,
  2. This KML is opened by TCX converter, added heights and exported as CSV,
  3. CSV is imported by ArcGIS,
  4. We use the tool ‘extract multi values to points‘ to get in the same table the values of our DTM and the values from Google Earth,
  5. We use Excel to calculate the RMSE and get a quantitative result,

These are the values in our DTM


This is the path we have to draw in Google Earth


Using TCX converter we get the heights out of Google Earth’s DTM


Using the tool ‘extract multi values to points‘ we get the heights out of our DTM


We measure the differences and extract the RMSE.
Are we within our acceptance threshold or expected level of accuracy?.

You guys have to figure this out for yourselves!!!

Lost regarding RMSE calculation?. Think you have to take a look at this other post.



Hope you guys have enjoyed this post, if so, don’t forget sharing it.

Alberto Concejal
MSc GIS and QCQA expert (well this is my post and i say what i want :-))

DTM from SRTM? Let’s compare sources using RMSE (Root Mean Square Error) and a gaussian kernell density map


I guess we all can make a DTM out of many sources but SRTM is one of the most common ones, right?. Then let’s learn from this very simple approach how close we are from the SRTM raw data.

  1. Selecting a not very big representative area to be able to handle it,
  2. exporting raster to polygon (from SRTM 3 arcsec/90m) dataset 1
  3. exporting raster to polygon 30m (our DTM dataset) dataset 2
  4. exporting to POIs 30m (our DTM dataset) dataset 2b
  5. Spatial join POIs dataset 2b vs dataset 1
  6. RMSE
  7. visualizing delta using a density map/gaussian kernell +appropriate symbolization

In yellow we see theres a full correspondence between SRTM and our DTM dataset and in blue there’s a ‘hole’ and in red there’s a ‘mountain’, this means it’s in here where the shift is more important.

This way we can highlight if sources are OK.

It’s simple but it works. How do you like it?. Please feel free to send some feedbak.
(Software used: ArcGIS 10.1, Global Mapper 13.2)

Alberto Concejal


density maps parameters


Spatial join between both DTM datasets


Density map for highlighting differences between both datasets (ours and SRTM’s)


RMSE. It’s not too big so there’s need to visualize to find potential bizarre spots


bizarre DTM heights

Using Excel to calculate the RMSE for LiDAR vertical ground control points



The height accuracy of the collected LiDAR data can be verified by comparing with independently surveyed ground control points on hard, flat, open surfaces. It is essentially just calculating the height differences for all the control points and then determining the height root mean squared error (RMSE) or differences. Most LiDAR processing software have the reporting function built-in. However, plain Microsoft Excel can also do the job (except for extracting the elevation from the LiDAR data).

Assuming that you are able to calculate the height differences for all the control points and place in a spreadsheet as shown in the figure below. I have a column of delta Z values in column A.

Then to calculate the RMS value for the elevation differences, I can do the following.

  1. In a cell, type in the formula:= SQRT(SUMSQ(A2:A18)/COUNTA(A2:A18))where A2:A18 are the values from cell A2 to A18 in the spreadsheet. Simply replace these with the actual locations on your spreadsheet.
  2. Press RETURN.
    The RMSE value is calculated.