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What is the difference between a DEM and a DTM?

The 5-meter DEMs in Alaska contain ‘DTM’ in the file names. The term digital terrain model, or DTM, is often used as a synonym for a digital elevation model for these products and should not be confused with  a triangulated irregular network which is a vector form of DTM. The USGS distributes Alaska elevation datasets that are labeled as DTM in the file names; however, these files are raster models with elevations at regularly spaced intervals. Therefore, the Alaska datasets labeled as DTMs are equivalent to USGS DEMs in format and surface representation.

Tags: Maps, Topographic, Data Products