Raised-relief map

Raised-relief map

A raised-relief map or terrain model is a three-dimensional representation, usually of terrain. When representing terrain, the elevation dimension is usually exaggerated by a factor between five and ten; this facilitates the visual recognition of terrain features.


Starting with a topographic map one can cut out from some sheet material successive layers, with edges following the contour lines on the map. These may be assembled in a stack to obtain a rough approximation of the terrain. This method, without vertical exaggeration, is commonly used as the base for architectural models. For models of landforms, the stack will then be smoothed by filling with some material. This may then be used directly or for greater durability a mold may be made from this. This mold may then be used to produce a plaster model.

Vacuum formed models

By using automated machinery a topographic model may be made by cutting a form with a numerically controlled mill guided by interpretation of the data used to produce a topographic map, The map may then be printed on a sheet of thermoplastic, which is then heated and drawn over the master. Vacuum is then applied to draw the soft plastic into the shape of the form. [American Educational Products, [http://www.amep.com/cat_home_maps.asp Raised Relief Maps from Hubbard Scientific] , How it is done.] Such maps are commonly available in specialty map stores.

Non-terrain applications

For appropriate mathematical functions and especially for certain types of statistics, a similar model may be constructed as an aid to understanding a function or as an aid to studying the statistical data.

ee also

*Digital terrain model
*Hypsometric tints
*List of Chinese inventions#R
*Musée des Plans-Reliefs


External links

* [http://www.terrainmodels.com Terrain Models] , a website of the Institute of Cartography at ETH Zurich
* [http://www.loc.gov/rr/geogmap/guide/gmillgtm.html Library of Congress: Geography and Maps - Globes and Terrain Models]
* [http://cartome.org/reliefmap.htm Report of the Relief Map Department, G-2-C, G.H.Q., of the American Expeditionary Forces]
* [http://home.att.net/~amcnet3/topos/topomodels.html Allan McCollum: The Topographical Model Donation Project]
* [http://reliefs.ch/english/herstellung.htm How to build a landscape-model] by Konrad Weber

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