Quickly retrieve elevation from lat/long

A pointer to High Earth Orbit via Slashgeo:

EarthTools has a webservice that covers the US and Europe using the SRTM data. Given a latitude/longitude it returns the height above sea-level in feet and meters. (found from Quakr Viewr) Geonames offers two services using the SRTM data, and also the GTOPO30 from the USGS. Geonames gets bonus points for also returning the results in JSON. Geonames also uses a larger dataset – lands within 60 degrees north and 56 degrees south.

(This is not the only webservice offered through these sites, you can also retrieve countryinfo, timezone, sunrise/sunset etc.)

Update: see note of caution from Donald below.

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4 thoughts on “Quickly retrieve elevation from lat/long”

  1. Hi -

    I'm came across this blog while researching for a GIS project at CU-Denver. I thought you might be interested to check out the project. It's still a 'beta' product - basically it's a web app to upload a lat/lon file, query the USGS' elevation web service, and return a file containing ground level at each point. It seems to be very similar to the EarthTools webservice you discuss. Currently I'm just trying to get some user feedback, so check it out if you'd like.

    http://www.latlontoelevation.com

    cheers,
    Matt

    1. I have been trying this site recently to amend some lat-long route data to identify the route profile.
      I found the interface simple to use, but unfortunately there were a large amount of failures.

      Although my input file was restricted to 1000 entries (claims to handle 2500) I often found that the query failed. When it did retun results there were often only about 9 to15. I did once get just over 500 results.

      However, my recent attempts to use it have only returned zero elevation values, which is clearly wrong.

  2. How can one convert an elevation value thats with respect to 'mean sea level' with one thats with respect to a geodetic datum, such as NAVD 1988 or NGVD ?

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