It depends on the classes of the x and y what is returned.

If x is a Raster* object the extent of y is used, irrespective of the class of y, and a Raster* is returned. This is equivalent to crop.

If x is a Spatial* object, a new Spatial* object is returned. If x or y has a data.frame, these are also returned (after merging if necessary) as part of a Spatial*DataFrame, and this is how intersect is different from rgeos::gIntersection on which it depends.

Intersecting SpatialPoints* with SpatialPoints* uses the extent (bounding box) of y to get the intersection. Intersecting of SpatialPoints* and SpatialLines* is not supported because of numerical inaccuracies with that. You can use buffer, to create SpatialPoygons* from SpatialLines* and use that in intersect. Or try gIntersection.

methods, spatial
# S4 method for Extent,ANY
intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for Raster,ANY intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for SpatialPoints,ANY intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for SpatialPolygons,SpatialPolygons intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for SpatialPolygons,SpatialLines intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for SpatialPolygons,SpatialPoints intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for SpatialLines,SpatialPolygons intersect(x, y)

# S4 method for SpatialLines,SpatialLines intersect(x, y)


Extent, Raster*, SpatialPolygons*, SpatialLines* or SpatialPoints* object


same as for x


if x is an Extent object: Extent

if x is a Raster* object: Raster*

if x is a SpatialPoints* object: SpatialPoints*

if x is a SpatialPolygons* object: SpatialPolygons*

if x is a SpatialLines* object and if y is a SpatialLines* object: SpatialPoints*

if x is a SpatialLines* object and if y is a SpatialPolygons* object: SpatialLines*

See Also

union, extent, crop

  • intersect
  • intersect,Extent,ANY-method
  • intersect,Raster,ANY-method
  • intersect,SpatialPoints,ANY-method
  • intersect,SpatialPolygons,SpatialPolygons-method
  • intersect,SpatialPolygons,SpatialLines-method
  • intersect,SpatialPolygons,SpatialPoints-method
  • intersect,SpatialPolygons,ANY-method
  • intersect,SpatialLines,SpatialPolygons-method
  • intersect,SpatialLines,SpatialLines-method
e1 <- extent(-10, 10, -20, 20)
e2 <- extent(0, 20, -40, 5)
intersect(e1, e2)

if (require(rgdal) & require(rgeos)) {
	p <- shapefile(system.file("external/lux.shp", package="raster"))
	b <- as(extent(6, 6.4, 49.75, 50), 'SpatialPolygons')
	projection(b) <- projection(p)
	i <- intersect(p, b)
	plot(b, add=TRUE, col='red')
	plot(i, add=TRUE, col='blue', lwd=2)
# }
Documentation reproduced from package raster, version 2.9-5, License: GPL (>= 3)

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