Measurements of morphometric parameters from digital elevation models

Michael Gilichinsky, Dmitry Melnikov, Ivan Melekestsev, Natasha Zaretskaya, Moshe Inbar

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The present research examines the measured morphometric values of monogenetic cinder cones in the Tolbachik volcanic field (Kluchevskaya volcanic group, Kamchatka). The cones were measured from digital elevation models derived from satellite data (ASTER and SRTM) and from digitized topographic maps. The GPS measurements of 85 locations were performed in the field to provide geodetic reference for DEM processing as well as to assess the accuracy of the DEM. A methodology for morphometric measurements on a DEM is proposed. The morphometric parameters derived from a DEM include the main characteristics that control the rate of degradational evolution of the cone: height, width and slope. The measured morphometric values were compared and accuracy assessment was carried out. Our study analyzes the morphometric values of four recent cinder cones formed during the last basaltic eruption in 1975-76, and of five older ones formed during the last 2000 years. We show that morphometric values obtained from a DEM are affected by the resolution change, and characteristics of the same cinder cone may vary in their values among DEMs of different resolutions. According to the results, the morphometry of the cinder cones can be well characterized by a DEM derived from remotely sensed data. The calculated morphometric parameters showed a correlation with the spatial resolution of the DEM and relative age of the cinder cones. All studied DEM (including coarse resolution SRTM) were found suitable for morphometric measurements under the constraint of spatial resolution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-145
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences - ISPRS Archives
StatePublished - 2010
EventCore Spatial Databases - Updating, Maintenance and Services - From Theory to Practice - Haifa, Israel
Duration: 15 Mar 201017 Mar 2010


  • Cinder cones
  • DEM
  • Morphometric parameters
  • SRTM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Geography, Planning and Development


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