Rasterize the space and compute metrics for each cell

Computes a series of descriptive statistics for a LiDAR dataset within each cell of a grid.

grid_metrics(.las, func, res = 20, start = c(0, 0), splitlines = FALSE)

An object of class LAS


the function to be applied to each cell


numeric. The size of the cells. Default 20.


vector x and y coordinates for the reference raster. Default is (0,0).


logical. If TRUE the algorithm will compute the metrics for each flightline individually. It returns the same cells several times in overlap.


Computes a series of descriptive statistics defined by the user. Output is a data.frame in which each line is a raster (single grid cell), and each column is a metric. grid_metrics is similar to cloud_metrics except it computes metrics within each cell in a predefinded grid. The grid cell coordinates are pre-determined for a given resolution. So the algorithm will always provide the same coordinates independently of the dataset. When start = (0,0) and res = 20 grid_metrics will produce the following raster centers: (10,10), (10,30), (30,10) etc.. When start = (-10, -10) and res = 20 grid_metrics will produce the following raster centers: (0,0), (0,20), (20,0) etc.. In Quebec (Canada) reference is (-831600, 117980) in the NAD83 coordinate system. The function to be applied to each cell is a classical function (see examples) that returns a labelled list of metrics. The following existing function can help the user to compute some metrics:

Users must write their own functions to create metrics. grid_metrics will dispatch the LiDAR data for each cell in the user's function. The user writes their function without considering grid cells, only a cloud of points (see example).


It returns a data.table containing the metrics for each cell. The table has the class "lasmetrics" enabling easy plotting.

  • grid_metrics
LASfile <- system.file("extdata", "Megaplot.laz", package="lidR")
lidar = readLAS(LASfile)

# Canopy surface model with 4 m^2 cells
grid_metrics(lidar, max(Z), 2) %>% plot

# Mean height with 400 m^2 cells
grid_metrics(lidar, mean(Z)) %>% plot

# Define your own new metrics
myMetrics = function(z, i)
  metrics = list(
     zwimean = sum(z*i)/sum(i), # Mean elevation weighted by intensities
     zimean  = mean(z*i),       # Mean products of z by intensity
     zsqmean = sqrt(mean(z^2))  # Quadratic mean


metrics = grid_metrics(lidar, myMetrics(Z, Intensity))

plot(metrics, "zwimean")
plot(metrics, "zimean")
plot(metrics, "zsqmean")
# }
Documentation reproduced from package lidR, version 1.0.2, License: GPL-3

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