Journal of Geodesy

, Volume 79, Issue 1–3, pp 1–10 | Cite as

Global and local methods for tracking the intersection curve between two surfaces

  • A. BorkowskiEmail author
  • W. Keller


At present, the modelling of terrain edges from discrete data clouds {x,y,z} is one of the ‘hot topics’ in the processing of laser scanning data. This paper proposes two different methods for the three-dimensional modelling of terrain edges. Common to both methods is the idea to describe the terrain edge as the intersection line of two surface patches z i =z(x,y), i=1,2. The first method is based on numerical integration of a differential equation describing the intersection line. The second method uses the snakes algorithm for the identification of the terrain edge. Both methods are tested for synthetic and real-world data examples, which shows that they are suitable for the practical extraction of edges from laser scanning data.


Surface discontinuities Intersection curve Numerical integration Snakes 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geodesy and PhotogrammetryAgricultural University of WroclawWroclawPoland
  2. 2.Geodätisches InstitutUniversität StuttgartStuttgartGermany

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