UAV-derived Digital Surface Models and orthoimages for three alpine glaciers

UAV-derived DSMs and orthoimages

Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) surveys were conducted between 2015 and 2016 on the Sankt Annafirn, Findelen- and Griesgletscher, situated in the Swiss Alps. Three surveys at the Sankt Annafirn allowed for a full glacier coverage, four surveys at Griesgletscher allowed an almost full glacier coverage and seven surveys at Findelengletscher allowed for a partial coverage of the glacier tongue (see individual datasets for exact extent). For each survey, a high resolution orthoimage and a Digital Surface Model (DSM) was created.

UAV surveys:

Prior flight, Ground Control Points (GCPs) were deployed on the glacier surface and measured with a differential GPS (Trimble R7 or Leica GPS 1200). They allowed precise georeferencing of the UAV-derived datasets. UAV flight plans were planned with the software eMotion 2 and a SenseFly eBee was used as surveying platform. The images were then processed with the software Agisoft Photoscan Pro 1.1.6 .

The location and dates of each survey can be found in the table together with the number of flights performed (Nflights), the number of acquired images (Nimages), the number of GCPs set (NGCPs) and the surveyed area.

A folder for each dataset is available (see folder name in table), which contains:

  • An orthoimage glacier_date_photoscan_oi_CH1903+_LV95_0.1m.tif

  • A Digital Surface Model glacier_date_photoscan_dsm_CH1903+_LV95_0.1m.tif

  • The Agisoft Photoscan automatic processing report glacier_date_photoscan_report.pdf


  • glacier is the name of the surveyed glacier

  • date is the date of the UAV image acquisition

  • photoscan is the name of the photogrammetric software

  • oi or dsm the type of dataset

  • CH1903+_LV95 is the coordinate system and datum of the dataset

  • 0.1m is the resolution of the dataset in meter

  • .tif is the extention of the dataset


Details about the UAV surveys, the image processing and the accuracy of the UAV-derived products can be found in this publication below.

Paper Citation:

Gindraux et al. 2017. Accuracy Assessment of Digital Surface Models from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles’Imagery on Glaciers, Remote Sensing, 9, 186, 1-15, doi: 10.3390/rs9020186.

The folder contains all UAV flights performed on the Sankt Annafirn, Findelengletscher and Griesgletscher. The flights were planned with the software eMotion2 and have the .afp extention.

Funding Information:

This work was supported by:
  • Funding information not available.


Gindraux, Saskia; Farinotti, Daniel; Boesch, Ruedi (2017). UAV-derived Digital Surface Models and orthoimages for three alpine glaciers. Remote Sensing. doi:10.16904/envidat.48.

DataCite ISO 19139 GCMD DIF README.txt BibTex RIS

Data and Resources


Field Values
DOI 10.16904/envidat.48
Publication State Published
  • Given Name: Saskia  Family Name: Gindraux  Email: saskia.gindrauxfoo(at)  Affiliation: WSL  DataCRediT: Collection, Validation, Curation, Publication, Supervision
  • Given Name: Daniel  Family Name: Farinotti  Email: daniel.farinottifoo(at)  ORCID: 0000-0003-3417-4570  Affiliation: ETH-VAW/WSL  DataCRediT: Collection, Publication, Supervision
  • Given Name: Ruedi  Family Name: Boesch  Email: ruedi.boeschfoo(at)  Affiliation: WSL  DataCRediT: Collection, Publication, Supervision
Contact Person Given Name: Saskia  Family Name: Gindraux  Email: saskia.gindrauxfoo(at)  Affiliation: WSL
Publication Publisher: Remote Sensing  Year: 2017
  • Type: Created  Date: 2017-02-22
Version 1.0
Type Dataset
General Type Dataset
Language English
Location Switzerland
Content License ODbL with Database Contents License (DbCL)    [Open Data]
Last Updated November 3, 2019, 21:14 (CET)
Created July 18, 2018, 14:09 (CEST)

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