Intro: ROCK Surveyor

Learn your way around the ROCK Surveyor deliverables

One of the key deliverables produced from aerial LiDAR data is a bare earth surface model called a Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and Contours.  To generate these deliverables, the ROCK cloud offers the ROCK Surveyor which processes raw LiDAR data and produces a ground classified LAS, DEM, Contours and a GCP Accuracy Report.


A DEM (Digital Elevation Model) and Contours allow you to get accurate insight into the ground topography.  One of the key advantages of LiDAR vs. Photogrammetry techniques is the ability of the LiDAR to penetrate through vegetation canopy and accurately measure the bare earth surface.

When you order ROCK Surveyor,  the ROCK A.I. Engine gets to work.  The A.I. Engine meticulously classifies the LiDAR data as Ground and Non-Ground. 

Once the ground is accurately determined, a DEM and contours are generated. The DEM and contour lines are delivered in the most popular formats so you can import into any CAD or GIS software packages. Additionally, you can view the contours right on the ROCK Cloud!


HubSpot Video

How to Order ROCK Surveyor

Know Before You Order:

Breakline orders or merged projects present special considerations for adjustment to your cloud.

Please be sure you have all GCP's in your project PRIOR to ordering Surveyor with Breaklines. Also make sure you check alignment for each individual cloud PRIOR to ordering ROCK Surveyor on a merged project. Once the order is placed and processing has started,  we are unable to cancel the order or refund tokens used. 

  1. Go the ROCK Marketplace by clicking the green "process" bar in the bottom of the left pane of your project.
  2. Click "Order" on the ROCK Surveyor Item in the marketplace.
  3. Select the contour interval level you want (0.5 ft - 100 ft).
  4. Select which Classification Level option you'd like for your order.
    • Ground Only - this creates two classifications. Ground and "everything else" in your dataset.
    • Enhanced Classification - Ground + Roads, Water and Vegetation (all non-ground will be classified as High Veg). Includes building footprint and contour breaks. All others are "unclassified"
    • Enhanced Classification Plus - Ground + Roads, Water, Vegetation (where it exists Veg will be classified as Low, Medium or High),  Bridges, Transmission, Power Poles and Buildings.



    • Not all points in your dataset will be classified under each respective class due to voxelization,  which picks a representative group of points for the classification to prevent over classification and  to reduce the number of triangles built in the mesh. 
    • Classifications will be applied to your entire project. If you would like to reduce the area of the ordered deliverable (and thus reduce the cost) you will need to delete the points from your dataset that you do not want processed.

      If you have a Rock Cloud Business account then you can do this in the cloud. 

      One exception to this is ordering "Break lines". You can select one or more areas using the "Enhanced Processing" feature of the area tool in order to select where you would like break lines to be placed. See 

        5.  Select whether you'd like breaklines included in your order. Breaklines will help accuracy around bodies of water, rivers, creeks and roadway features like curbs and gutters. 

      6.  Review your Order Summary and Delivery Date Estimate (see "Pricing" section below for a breakdown of what you're looking at).

      7.  If everything looks satisfactory, click the "Order" button
      • Once your deliverable is complete, you can dial in your vertical accuracy for your dataset by following the steps in this article: Improving Vertical Accuracy. Keep in mind that this works ONLY if you did not order breaklines.

      ROCK Surveyor Deliverables

      You will receive an email to the address associated with your ROCK Cloud Account when your project is finished processing. Your deliverables will include the following:

      1. Ground Classified laz file
      2. SHP file containing geometry data
      3. DBF attribute format file
      4. SHX shape index file
      5. DEM in TIF format
      6. GCP Accuracy Report

      An example of the deliverables can be found here: ROCK Surveyor Demo Dataset & Deliverables

      Quality Control/Quality Assurance

      At ROCK, we value your success and satisfaction with your deliverables.  Each project goes through the A.I. engine and is then verified by a GIS Specialist at ROCK robotic before it's approved.  If you have any questions about your deliverables, please contact and we will be happy to help!