Interpolate From Point Cloud (Data Management)


Interpolates a digital terrain model (DTM) or a digital surface model (DSM) from a point cloud using one of the interpolation methods provided.


  • The form of the point cloud can be either LAS files or a solution point table.


InterpolateFromPointCloud(in_container, out_raster, cell_size, {interpolation_method}, {smooth_method}, {surface_type}, {fill_dem})
ParameterExplanationData Type

The path and name of the file, folder, or feature layer. The input can be a folder of LAS files or a solution point table from orthomapping tools.

The LAS files can be the output from the Generate Point Cloud tool, in which LAS points are categorized as ground and above ground. The solution point table is output from either the Compute Block Adjustments tool or the Compute Camera Model tool.

Folder; File; Feature Layer

The output raster dataset location, name, and file extension.

The output can be created in most writable raster formats, such as .tif, .crf, or .img.

Raster Dataset

The cell size of the output raster dataset.


Specifies the method used to interpolate the output raster dataset from the point cloud.

  • TRIANGULATION This is also known as triangulated irregular network (TIN) linear interpolation and is designed for irregularly distributed sparse points, such as solution points from block adjustment computation.
  • NATURAL_NEIGHBORThis is similar to triangulation but generates a smoother surface and is more computationally intensive.
  • IDWThis is used for regularly distributed dense points, such as point cloud LAS files from the Generate Point Cloud tool. The IDW search radius is automatically computed based on average point density.

Specifies the filter to smooth the output raster dataset.

  • GAUSS3x3A Gaussian filter with a 3 by 3 window will be used.
  • GAUSS5x5A Gaussian filter with a 5 by 5 window will be used.
  • GAUSS7x7A Gaussian filter with a 7 by 7 window will be used.
  • GAUSS9x9A Gaussian filter with a 9 by 9 window will be used.
  • NONENo smoothing filter will be used.

Specifies whether a digital terrain model or a digital surface model will be created.

  • DTMA digital terrain model will be created by interpolating only the ground points.
  • DSMA digital surface model will be created by interpolating all the points.

A DEM raster input that is used to fill NoData areas. Areas of NoData may exist where pixels do not have enough information from the input to generate any values.

Raster Dataset; Raster Layer; Mosaic Dataset; Mosaic Layer

Code sample

InterpolateFromPointCloud example 1 (stand-alone script)

This is a Python sample for the InterpolateFromPointCloud tool.

import arcpy
                                           'c:/data/dsm.crf', '10',
                                           'IDW', 'GAUSS5x5', 'DTM')

Licensing information

  • Basic: No
  • Standard: No
  • Advanced: Yes