Skip to main content

What is the BPF format ?

BPF (Binary Point Format) is a binary point cloud format that was developed by MIT/LL, JHU APL and NGA. This format is primarily intended to store unstructured point clouds.


The BPF format is considered as an alternative to ASCII point cloud files, which take a long time during read and write operations.


The BPF format has undergone several improvements since its inception in 2015. The second version of the format mainly focused on improving data storage workflows, with the aim of speeding up write and read operations even more. The third version (BPF3) has been consolidated by adding Universal LIDAR Error Model (ULEM) data as metadata that includes information about the acquisition devices.

The platform is compatible with BPF versions 1, 2 and 3 which have Zlib type compression.


In case of problem or difficulty, do not hesitate to contact the platform team.