Esri ArcInfo Binary Grid .ADF File Description


The Esri ArcInfo Binary Grid filter imports and exports Esri Arc/Info binary grid files .ADF.


File Description

The Arc/Info Binary Grid format is the internal working format of the Arc/Info Grid product. This format should not be confused with the Arc/Info ASCII Grid format which is the interchange format for elevation grids. An Esri grid is a raster GIS file format developed by Esri, which has two formats:

  1. A proprietary binary format, also known as an ARC/INFO GRID, ARC GRID and many other variations

  2. A non-proprietary ASCII format, also known as an ARC/INFO ASCII GRID

The formats were introduced for ARC/INFO. The binary format is widely used within Esri programs, such as ArcGIS, while the ASCII format is used as an exchange, or export format, due to the simple and portable ASCII file structure.


File Description

A binary Esri grid is stored in several files contained in at least two directories: the name directory and an info directory, where name has strict naming conventions.


The grid defines geographic space as an array of equally sized square grid points arranged in rows and columns. Each grid point stores a numeric value that represents a geographic attribute (such as elevation or surface slope) for that unit of space. Each grid cell is referenced by its X, Y coordinate location.


A grid coverage (or data set) actually consists of a number of files. A grid normally lives in its own directory named after the grid. For example, the grid nwgrd1 lives in the directory nwgrd1, and has the following component files:


·      nwgrd1/dblbnd.adf - file containing the bounds of the grid.

·      nwgrd1/hdr.adf - header file

·      nwgrd1/sta.adf - statistics file

·      nwgrd1/vat.adf - value attributes file

·      nwgrd1/w001001.adf - the actual raster data file

·      nwgrd1/w001001x.adf - file containing file offset and size of each block in the raster data file.


Import Method

Choose the File | Import command.


Import Options

Specify import options in the Lattice Import Options dialog.


Export Method

Select a lattice or image module and choose the File | Save Data command.



See Also

File Format Chart

File | Import

File | Save Data

Lattice Import Options

Esri Binary Float Grid File Description