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Clearance Checker

This page describes the Orbit desktop extension “Clearance Checker”.

Main Toolbar > Extensions > Clearance Checker


The Clearance checker extension calculates the lowest clearance of overhanging objects or constructions above a surface.


Use the generic workflow for Point Cloud Based Extensions to define the source file.

The method for the range of interest is 'Path', 'Multiple Paths', 'Area' and 'Multiple Areas'.

Group By


For every area or path, the point cloud gets divided into clusters. For each cluster, the lowest clearance will be calculated.


For every area or path, the lowest clearance will be calculated.

Ground Reference

Choose one of the below-described options to define the Ground Reference:

Point Cloud lowest Z

The lowest z-value of the point cloud.

Point Cloud Z below trajectory

The lowest z-value of the first point cloud cluster found below the trajectory.

Trajectory offset

Enter a fixed vertical offset from the trajectory - Ref. Advanced Parameters (see below).

A trajectory needs to be defined in block Trajectory: a new path can be drawn or selected.

Fixed height

Enter a fixed z-value - Ref. Advanced Parameters (see below).

Use paths

The source path(s) are used to set the ground reference.


Define parameters for the detection:

Pixel Size

The pixel size defines the grid size of the DEMs that are created. For every pixel, the lowest clearance is calculated.

Ground margin

The vertical offset between the Ground Reference that will be excluded from the analysis.

Slice Thickness

Horizontal sliced are used to define ground and ceiling within each pixel. If a slice with a minimum number of points is found above ground height, then the clearance for that pixel is defined.

Fixed Ground Height

The value for the fixed ground height, available when ground reference is Fixed height.

Trajectory Offset

The fixed offset from trajectory, available when ground reference is Trajectory offset.

Advanced Parameters

The advanced set of parameters can be accessed by small grey circle in top right corner of block Parameters.


  • Pixel Pts Min: The minimum number of points from the point cloud within a pixel. Pixels that include less points are not used to define floor and ceiling.
  • Slice Pts Min: The minimum number of points in a horizontal slice to define floor and ceiling of a pixel.
  • Clearance Pixels Min: The minimum number of pixels a cluster should have. The final floor and ceiling are defined by a cluster of pixels.
  • Point distance: The distance between line points to check clearance by line.
  • Context radius: The radius to use around line points to check clearance.
  • Context Pts Min: The minimum number of points in the context of a line point.
  • Clearance Max: If not zero, clearances above this value will not be considered.


  • Missing Sample: The value that will be used for the clearance.omi raster created if there are no overhanging objects (default = -9999).
  • Get point cloud as selection: Get a point cloud selection file of the clearance points.
  • Get point cloud attributes: Get a point cloud attribute file with clearances.
  • Get intermediate rasters: Get rasters created to detect clearance. Only available for clearances by area and clusters.


The Hit count is the number of clearances found.

  • Z range: Value of the clearance.
  • #pnts: Number of points defining the ceiling of the clearance.

DEM files are added to the Dataset List by default and are saved in the corresponding folder (see above).

  • Clearance
  • Cluster_min_clearance
  • Ground
  • Pixel_z_range

Clearance Checker Tab

In the Clearance Checker Tab all Clearance Projects are shown including the results and metadata. Standard operations like detaching and maximizing tab are available.

Last modified:: 2023/05/12 16:31