Elevation Maps

Elevation maps allow you to locate the highest points and the areas with high altitudes in a particular country or state. These maps are a category of topographic maps. In India, the Survey of India has the responsibility of overseeing every type of topographic mapping, surveys, and guides on the country.

Elevation Maps: A form of Topographic Map

A topographic map typically uses contour lines to describe the elevations of different areas. Elevation maps are available in digital form as well. Since India is a country with diverse geographical and topographical features, all these features can be highlighted in an elevation map.

In elevation maps, elevation is demonstrated with the help of spot heights, contour lines, and elevation shading. The topographic or elevation maps are unique in the sense that no other types of maps use contour lines to demonstrate the outline and altitude of the land. The three dimensional features of a territory can be correctly depicted through a topographic elevation map.

These maps normally demonstrate man-made and natural aspects of an area. The natural landscape usually includes valleys, hills, plateaus, rivers, lakes, and plants. Borders, roads, important buildings, and transmission lines can also be demonstrated with the help of these maps.

Elevation maps are helpful in various domains such as engineering, preservation of natural resources, exploration of energy, public works planning, ecological management, residential and commercial design, and outside recreational pursuits such as camping, mountaineering, and angling.

What are contour lines?

Contour lines join a set of spots of same altitude. These lines are applied to demonstrate relief or topography on a surface or map. These lines illustrate the altitude of land over the MSL (Mean Sea Level) in either meters or feet. Contour lines can be put at any preferred gap. For instance, many contour lines that are proximally placed to each other signify rocky or undulating landscape. At the same time, when they are drawn by keeping a fair amount of distance between each other, they signify a milder incline/undulation.

What is contour mapping?

Topographic maps apply different types of contour lines to show the form and altitude of the landscape and the various other aspects of an area. Contour mapping helps in demonstrating three-dimensional things such as valleys and mountains on a map or plane, which has two dimensions. Contour lines or curve lines are lines that join the position of the same levels of altitude.

Elevation Maps Area of Use

Elevation maps can help in the following areas:
  • National security
  • Disaster and emergency response
  • Demographics evaluation
  • Resource and amenities management
  • Mining and exploration of energy
  • Environmental screening
  • Graphical representation of thematic information
  • Logistics and fleet management
  • Other types of map creation
  • Infrastructure development
  • Itinerary planning
  • Direction finding
  • Market evaluation and placement
  • Observation
  • Risk evaluation
  • Education

Last Updated on 16 September 2011



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