What's new in SURE 4.0

Accelerate your production!

Data: kind courtesy of Geofly

The powerful engine of SURE 4 and its out-of-the-box experience will take fields like urban planning, cadaster, disaster control, topography capturing and communal applications, as well as inspection, web-visualization, 3D city models and propagation simulation (5G) to a whole new level. Deliver amazing 3D meshes, point clouds, and True Orthos timely, with enhanced capabilities for more flexible processing and product delivery. Click here for a visual impression of SURE 4.0.

In the following, we will guide you through our newest release and introduce each feature in detail using the following structure:

Stronger Engines

  • Optimized True Ortho Engine - sharper edges and improved completeness in DSM & True Ortho

  • New 3D Mesh Engine - drastically improved geometry and web streaming performance (Cesium, slpk)

  • New LiDAR Engine - data fusion for more accuracy and completeness

Better Workflows

  • Out-of-the-box Distributed Processing - connect computers easily and scale production

  • Shapefile support - import 3D & 2D shapefiles for waterbodies and surface corrections

Overall Improvements

In order to improve user experience and the quality of results, you will come across some visible and invisible software changes. We are happy to provide you with a dedicated transition guide to get an overview of the impact when updating from SURE 3 to SURE 4 - including general changes and adjustments regarding the project folder structure, GUI and CLI.

Stronger Engines

Improvements and new implementations within the three SURE Engines - True Ortho Engine, 3D Mesh Engine, LiDAR Engine - presented in the boxes below.

True Ortho Engine

Data courtesy of Leica Geosystems

  • Sharper edges: quality of building edges is improved
  • Improved completeness: much larger data holes can be covered by using an improved interpolation method leading to less gaps
  • Smoother color experience:
    • undesired speckle phenomena are decreased
    • much smoother boundaries between different imagery used for texturing, e.g. when texturing occluded areas
  • Better overall geometrical quality: improved outlier rejection




Improved DSM interpolation parameters to fill gaps and remove interpolation artifacts to enhance True Ortho output

3D Mesh Engine

Data courtesy Geofly

  • Faster production performance
  • More realistic reconstruction of geometry
    • sharper edges
    • flatter walls
    • more realistic reconstruction of thin objects
    • removal of flying objects
  • Optimized texture
    • consistent texture look in all viewing distances
    • improved size and number of textures
    • optimized selection of images to be considered
  • Highly optimized web streaming formats
    • smooth and performant streaming experience (new LOD)
    • consistent & much-improved look in all viewing distances
    • supports your workflow needs (ESRI, Cesium and more)
  • Added point-wise precision values for Point Cloud
    • .las files contain geometrical precision value
    • noise reduction in shadows using point-wise precision values for adaptive filtering

New 3D Mesh geometry: Comparison between SURE 3 and SURE 4. Data courtesy of Aerowest

Point-wise precision value within point cloud: blue-colored points show higher precision than yellow-colored points. Data courtesy of Aerowest

Cesium output and LOD support. Data courtesy of Geofly

LiDAR Engine

  • Enabled data fusion for more accuracy and completeness
    • combining LiDAR and image data
    • robust surface estimation
  • Enabled support for LiDAR trajectories - support for .sbet and .sol formats
  • Improved 3D Mesh quality
  • LiDAR only
    • providing results without requiring an orientation solution
    • possibility of texturing 3D LiDAR Meshes

Photogrammetry + LiDAR vs. LiDAR only. Data courtesy of Geomni


True Ortho produced by LiDAR data only - textured with LiDAR sensor's attached camera (left); 3D Mesh produced with LiDAR only data (right). Data courtesy of Riegl

Better Workflows

Improvements and new implementations within the SURE workflows.

Distributed Processing
  • Connect computers easily and scale production
  • Better usability
    • better integration of distributed processing master messages in the GUI and the log file
    • better handling of distributed processing processes, so manual intervention (e.g. terminating orphaned processes using the task manager) is no longer required
    • improved logging when using distributed processing
    • all distributed processing options now have automatic presets
    • first results can be reviewed earlier
  • More robustness/stability
    • more robust extraction of distributed processing files on the node
    • more robust handling of errors on nodes when using distributed processing

Shapefile Support
  • New 2D Shapefile Support
    • for waterbodies (in Beta) - automatical height estimation
    • for surface corrections
  • Improved shapefile compatibility
  • Overlapping waterbody shapes are now supported
  • More accurate results when using waterbody shapes with LiDAR data in the 3D workflow

Overall improvements

Improvements and new implementations affecting SURE overall.

Stereo Model Selection
  • Improved support for a wide range of flight configurations, so e.g. circular patterns are optimally supported
  • More robustness and better geometry for mixed flights and complex acquisition patterns
  • Added stereo model selection statistics to log output


Besides the usual flight patterns, various others are supported: unstructured flight (left), differing overlaps (right)

Global Color Balancing
  • Equalizing color across datasets captured with varying light conditions

Third Party Compatibility
  • Added support for HxMap orientations (gori)
  • Simplified Agisoft orientation input, original images can be used directly, no undistortion mandatory any more
  • Meshes can be analyzed using Supermap iDesktop
  • Mesh: Added support for I3S (SLPK) format

User Experience
  • New intuitive output folder structure
  • Automatization of parametrization
  • Clearer parameter naming
  • Progress bars in the status tab in the GUI are now correctly updated
  • Subprojects count parameter was replaced with subproject size
  • Version number is now three digits long

Runtime and Storage
  • Tiled texture images are now generated if necessary to improve runtime
  • Generated 8-bit texture images are now compressed to save disk space
  • Improved runtime when using area polygon for several modules