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Morph Tools

Morph provides interactive terrain manipulation functionality. This is an advanced tool used for reconstructing features that are missing or corrupted by noise in the original DEM such as dams, small drainages, and other artificial structures.

Morph is analogous to a paint brush where the kernel, or brush, is used to modify small areas of different shapes. The main difference between Morph and a brush in a paint program is that a click-drag does not create a continous line. Rather, dragging after clicking manipulates the elevation of the terrain inside the kernel, until the mouse button is released.

The Morph tool is activated by pressing M (default shortcut) or clicking the hand button in the Home menu. The options for Morph are located on the right-hand side of the Edit tab in the ribbon bar. When the morph tool is activated, a kernel grid is shown on the DEM around the mouse when the Shift key is pressed and held down. The shape and color of the kernel grid denote the kernel type and configuration.

Shape: The shape of the kernel denotes the kernel type. The kernel type is changed using a drop-down in the ribbon bar.

Color: The color of the kernel denotes the tuning mode. This is the parameter that is tuned when the Shift key is held down and the mouse wheel is scrolled. The tuning mode can be changed using a drop-down in the ribbon, or by pressing the Space bar while the Shift key is held down.

Kernel Type

Morph has three kernel types: Gaussian, Cylinder, and Ramp. Each kernel has different parameters which can be tuned to modify its shape.

Gaussian

The Gaussian kernel creates a rounded mound (or depression) in the shape of a two-dimensional Gaussian curve.

The following parameters can be changed by pressing the Shift key and scrolling the mouse wheel

Cylinder

The cylinder kernel creates a round or elliptical plateau with a flat-top.

The following parameters can be changed by pressing the Shift key and scrolling the mouse wheel

Ramp

The ramp kernel creates a rectangular plateau with a flat-top.

The following parameters can be changed by pressing the Shift key and scrolling the mouse wheel

Mode

The Morph kernel can be applied to the DEM using four different modes, which is configured in a drop-down in the ribbon bar:

Center Elevation

In Raise-only, Lower-only, and Overwrite modes, the center elevation of the kernel can be fixed so that it manipulates the DEM with a consistent elevation. This can be done by checking the "Set Center Elev." check box in the ribbon bar and manually entering the elevation value into the text box below it. In this way, Morph can be repeatedly used to produce a horizontally flat structure. For example, using the Ramp kernel with a fixed elevation can be used to construct the imaginary overpass shown below.