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Note: This document is for an older version of GRASS GIS that will be discontinued soon. You should upgrade, and read the current manual page.


v.clean.ogr - Imports vector data into a GRASS vector map, cleans the data topologically, and exports them again using OGR library.


vector, cleaning, OGR, topology, geometry, snapping


v.clean.ogr --help
v.clean.ogr [-luf] input=string layer=string [where=sql_query] [encoding=string] [key=string] [geometry=name] [snap=float] [min_area=float] output=name format=string [--overwrite] [--help] [--verbose] [--quiet] [--ui]


List available OGR layers in data source and exit
Open an existing output OGR datasource for update
List supported output formats and exit
Allow output files to overwrite existing files
Print usage summary
Verbose module output
Quiet module output
Force launching GUI dialog


input=string [required]
Name of OGR datasource to be imported
Example: directory containing shapefiles
layer=string [required]
OGR layer name.
Examples: shapefile name without .shp
WHERE conditions of SQL statement without 'where' keyword
Example: income < 1000 and population >= 10000
Encoding value for attribute data
Overrides encoding interpretation, useful when importing ESRI Shapefile
Name of column used for categories
If not given, categories are generated as unique values and stored in 'cat' column
Name of geometry column
If not given, all geometry columns from the input are used
Snapping threshold for boundaries (map units)
'-1' for no snap
Default: -1
Minimum size of areas to be retained in output (square meters)
Disabled with values <= 0
Default: 0
output=name [required]
Name of output OGR datasource
Examples: filename for a GeoPackage, directory for shapefiles
format=string [required]
Data format to write
Default: GPKG

Table of contents


v.clean.ogr cleans non-topological polygons in an OGR datasource by importing, cleaning, and exporting these polgons. This module should not be used with polygons that are correctly overlapping, e.g. buffers.

v.clean.ogr imports vector data from files and database connections supported by the OGR library into a temporary location. Only one input layer is imported.

Polygons in the input layer are automatically cleaned during impport. More thorough cleaning can be achieved by using the snap and min_area options.

The cleaned result is exported to the selected output datasource with "_clean" appended to the input layer name. Any overlaps are exported with "_overlaps" appended to the input layer name.

Supported Vector Formats

v.clean.ogr uses the OGR library which supports various vector data formats including GeoPackage, ESRI Shapefile, Mapinfo File, UK .NTF, SDTS, TIGER, IHO S-57 (ENC), DGN, GML, GPX, AVCBin, REC, Memory, OGDI, and PostgreSQL, depending on the local OGR installation. For details see the OGR web site. The OGR (Simple Features Library) is part of the GDAL library, hence GDAL needs to be installed to use v.clean.ogr.

The list of actually supported formats can be printed by -f flag.


Topology cleaning

When importing polygons, non-topological polygons are converted to topological areas. If the input polygons contain errors (unexpected overlapping areas, small gaps between polygons, or warnings about being unable to calculate centroids), the import might need to be repeated using a snap value as suggested in the output messages.

The snap threshold defines the maximal distance from one to another vertex in map units (for latitude-longitude locations in degree). If there is no other vertex within snap distance, no snapping will be done. Note that a too large value can severely damage area topology, beyond repair.

Further cleaning can be achieved by removing small areas using the min_area option. Note that units are always squaremeters. Values for min_area should generally be small, a value of 0.5 can already clean up lots of artefacts.


Cleaning polygons in a Shapefile in the current directory research_area
v.clean.ogr input=research_area layer=research_area output=research_area \
            snap=1e-4 min_area=1 -u --overwrite
Two new Shapefile layers "research_area_clean" and "research_area_overlaps" may be created in the same directory.

SEE ALSO, v.clean, v.out.ogr


Markus Metz


Available at: v.clean.ogr source code (history)

Latest change: Monday Jan 30 19:52:26 2023 in commit: cac8d9d848299297977d1315b7e90cc3f7698730

Note: This document is for an older version of GRASS GIS that will be discontinued soon. You should upgrade, and read the current manual page.

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