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SLEIPNIR propagation engine

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The legend

Sleipnir is a mythological 8-legged horse rode by Norse God Odin, capable of overcoming any terrain at unbeatable speed. This name was apt for our purpose built n-threaded LiDAR engine built from 8 years experience working with open source engines like SPLAT!


Sleipnir was developed from years of experience working with CLI engines like SPLAT! The code base was complex, brittle and increasingly difficult to maintain. Like many open source projects it reached a natural zenith where the maintenance effort outweighed the benefits of starting afresh.

Concurrently, developments in the world of digital elevation data meant the days of using 90m SRTM space shuttle tiles (Mapped in 2000 and still used by other tools today) were being rapidly made obsolete by LiDAR. A growing number of Government environmental agencies like USGS were publishing huge amounts of free high resolution public data. Retro-fitting the old open source tools work with this data was made possible but resulted in lots of duplication to co-exist with the legacy routines.

User defined clutter and open standard land cover data were built into the design at source so like the surface model, open standard files could be passed in and layered upon the surface model as a distinct layer with pixel-level attributes. Where a surface model is solid, clutter is permeable and Sleipnir lets you decide by how much.


Often with LiDAR, a dataset will be limited to a city, a river or a forest. Where a tile finishes you used to get an unsightly hard stop. Now with Sleipnir, surface model data is fused to a seamless raster irrespective of resolution so you could drop 50cm drone photogrammetry from Pix4D onto 30m DSM.

3D clutter support

As well as native LiDAR support, Sleipnir supports wide area land cover , custom clutter and 3D buildings with permeable attributes. Look carefully beyond the buildings in this image taken in an area without LiDAR: The large buildings are substantially attenuating the signal whilst the small buildings are allowing the signal to pass, with some attenuation. The level of attenuation is determined by the building thickness and the material attribute which can be represented within the data or user defined as a dB/metre value.


Unlike previous engines, Sleipnir has been developed under a proprietary license and is only available through the Cloud-RF service. For this reason it does not contain GPL models such as ITWOM3.0. For more information on Sleipnir licensing please contact support.

SLEIPNIRTM is a trademark of Farrant Consulting Ltd trading as Cloud-RFTM

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