Import Digital Obstacle File (Aviation)

Available with Aviation Charting license.

Available with Aviation Airports license.


Adds, deletes, and updates the obstacle point features in an input obstacle feature class using an input digital obstacle file (DOF).

A DOF provided by the FAA contains obstruction data for manufactured objects that affect domestic aeronautical charting or airport products. A DOF contains digital obstacle data within all FAA regions in addition to some areas of Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, the Bahamas, and the Pacific. A DOF does not purport to indicate the presence of all obstructions that may be encountered during flight.


  • The Input Digital Obstacle File parameter must reference a DOF with the .DAT file extension.

  • The Target Obstacle Features must be a point feature class containing obstacle features from an airport or charting geodatabase. For example, the FAA 18B geodatabase schema provided in the ArcGIS Aviation Airports product files contains an Obstacles feature class that can be updated using this tool.

  • The tool will include a message detailing the number of features that were added, modified, or deleted.

  • The tool can be customized using a JSON configuration file in the ArcGIS Pro installation location Resources\Aviation directory. The DOFConfig.json file allows you to change how the Import Digital Obstacle File tool processes a DOF. A custom configuration file allows for future changes to the FAA DOF specification or to the obstacle feature class schemas. In the absence of a configuration file, this tool will use its default configuration information.

  • If the tool identifies one or more text fields in the Target Obstacle Features parameter that are too short for the imported data, the tool will truncate the imported text data. The tool messages will include a warning message detailing which fields were truncated.


arcpy.aviation.ImportDOF(in_obstacle_file, obstacle_features)
ParameterExplanationData Type

A DOF with a .DAT file extension. The contents of the DOF will be used to update the obstacle_features parameter values.


The point feature class that will contain obstacle information from the DOF after execution.

Feature Layer

Derived Output

NameExplanationData Type

The updated point feature class containing obstacle information from the DOF.


The updated_obstacle_features parameter and the obstacle_features parameter refer to the same feature class.

Feature Layer

Code sample

ImportDOF example (stand-alone script)

The following code sample demonstrates how to use the ImportDOF function.

# Name:
# Description: Imports Digital Obstacle File (DOF) data into a feature class

import arcpy

# Check out Aviation license

# Set variables
dofFile = r'c:\data\DOF.dat'
features = r'c:\data\AIS.gdb\Obstacle'

# Execute ImportDOF
arcpy.aviation.ImportDOF(dofFile, features)

# Check in Aviation license


This tool does not use any geoprocessing environments.

Licensing information

  • Basic: No
  • Standard: Requires ArcGIS Aviation Charting
  • Advanced: Requires ArcGIS Aviation Charting

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