# Elevation: Wikis

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# Encyclopedia

### From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Elevation histogram of the surface of the Earth – approximately 71% of the Earth's surface is covered with water.

The elevation of a geographic location is its height above a fixed reference point, often the mean sea level. Elevation, or geometric height, is mainly used when referring to points on the Earth's surface, while altitude or geopotential height is used for points above the surface, such as an aircraft in flight or a spacecraft in orbit.

Less commonly, elevation is measured using the center of the Earth as the reference point. Due to equatorial bulge, there is debate which of the summits of Mt. Everest or Chimborazo is at the higher elevation, as the Chimborazo summit is further from the Earth's center while the Mt. Everest summit is higher above mean sea level.

## Maps and GIS

Part of a topographic map of Haleakala (Hawaii), showing elevation.

A topographical map is the main type of map used to depict elevation, often through use of contour lines.

In a Geographic Information System (GIS), digital elevation models (DEM) are commonly used to represent the surface (topography) of a place, through a raster (grid) dataset of elevations. Digital terrain models are another way to represent terrain in GIS.

To determine elevation of a place, it must be surveyed, in reference to a ground control point.

## Topography

The elevation of a mountain usually refers to its summit. The elevation of a hill also refers to the summit. A valley's elevation is usually taken from the lowest point but is often taken all over the valley.

## Global 1-kilometer map

This map is derived from GTOPO30 data that describes the elevation of Earth's terrain at intervals of 30 arcseconds (approximately 1 km). It uses color and shading instead of contour lines to indicate elevation.

 Each tile is available at a resolution of 1800 × 1800 pixels (approximate file size 1 MB, 60 pixels = 1 degree, 1 pixel = 1 minute)

# Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

### From Wikisource

 Elevation / Élévation by Charles Baudelaire, translated by Lewis Piaget Shanks
 NOTE: No.3 from "The Flowers of Evil" / "Les Fleurs du mal". Flowers of Evil (New York: Ives Washburn, 1931). Source: fleursdumal.org .

Élévation

Élévation

above the valleys and above the meres,
above the mountains, woods, the clouds, the sea,
beyond the sun, beyond the canopy
of aether, and beyond the starry spheres,

o Mind, thou soarest easily and well,
and like a swimmer tranced in lifting seas,
thou cleavest all those deep immensities,
thrilled by a manly joy ineffable.

fly far beyond this fog of pestilence; fly!
go purge thy squalor in the loftier air;
go quaff the pure Olympian ichor where
clear fires fill the whole pellucid sky.

behind the cares, the dark anxieties
that on our sunless hours drag and drift,
happy is he whom sturdy pinions lift
in spirit, toward those fields of light and peace;

o happy he whose thoughts, unfurling wings,
leap skyward like the lark at morning's call,
— who soars above this life, resolving all
the speech of flowers and of voiceless things!

This translation is hosted with different licensing information than from the original text. The translation status applies to this edition.
Original:
 This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.
Translation:
 This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was legally published within the United States (or the United Nations Headquarters in New York subject to Section 7 of the United States Headquarters Agreement) before 1964, and copyright was not renewed. For Class A renewals records (books only) published between 1923 and 1963, check the Stanford Copyright Renewal Database and the Rutgers copyright renewal records. For other renewal records of publications between 1922 - 1950 see the Pennsylvania copyright records scans. For all records since 1978, search the U.S. Copyright Office records.

# Simple English

When talking about geography the elevation of a certain point is how high it is compared to some reference point. Very often, the reference point is mean sea level, the level of the ocean midway between high and low tide on an average day.

Sometimes elevation is measured against the center of the earth. The problem there is that the earth does not really look like a ball, it looks more like a potato. This means, that while still at mean sea level (at the equator), some points are father away from the center of the earth than others. That way the peak of Chimborazo, a volcano in Ecuador is farther away from the center of the earth than the peak of Mount Everest. Yet, Mount Everest is higher above sea level.

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