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Spatial Match Tool

The Spatial Match tool establishes the spatial relationship (contains, intersects, touches, etc) between two sets of spatial objects. The tool accepts a set of spatial objects from the Target Input and a set of spatial objects from the Universe Input. At least one input stream should contain Polygon type spatial objects.

A Universe input connection into this tool is optional (this file can be specified via an input path ), as indicated by the white input connection arrow .

For each record from the Target’s data stream, the Spatial Match tool analyzes the spatial object’s extents and attempts to find a record in the Universe’s data stream whose spatial object’s extents intersect with that of the Target's. If a matching record is found in the Universe Input, it is sent through the Matched output, and joined to the Target record. If no matching Universe Input record is found, the Target record is sent through the Unmatched output.

The Spatial Match tool produces a single or double data stream with one record for each instance of a Target Input record matching a Universe Input record. The schema of the output table is formed by appending the fields from both records into one wide record.

While using spatial tools, you may have more than one spatial object field in the data stream. When you are configuring the final output tool, you must remember that output to files such as.dbf,.xls or.csv will not accept the spatial object fields, and that spatial files will accept only one spatial object field.

Configuration Properties:

The Spatial Match tool accepts two spatial inputs.

    1. Select the Target Spatial object from the drop down list

      TIP: When working with Polygons -The larger (physically) polygons should be on the Targets side when there are polygons on both sides. When working with Polygons and Points - Configure with the Polygon on the Targets side.

    2. Specify the Universe object. There are two choices.

      • Use Records from U Input:

        1. Select the Spatial Object field from the data going into the tool.

      • Use Records from File or Database: When reading in spatial objects from a data source, make sure the data source that is being brought in has already been sorted on the spatial object. Ensure no connection is going into the U input.

        1. To specify the input data source, either type in the file path location of the input or click Browse to navigate to the data source's location.

        2. Select the Spatial Object field from the input data source to match against.

      • TIP: The smaller (physically) objects should be on the Universe side.

        Specifying a *.yxdb file for direct import is a more efficient vehicle for running a Spatial Match. In fact, it is good practice to convert any static polygon file (such as basic geographies: States, Counties, etc.) to a pre-sorted *.yxdb file. See the FAQ for more information.

        If specifying a Calgary (cydb) file, be aware that the Calgary spatial index uses 5 decimal places of accuracy for compression and speed.  The YXDB spatial index uses 6 decimal places.  This adds an addition round off error of up to a maximum of 1.8 feet to Calgary indexes.  In other words, it is possible that a point can be 1.8 feet inside of a polygon and be found as outside in Calgary.

    3. Specify the type of Spatial Match to calculate. Choices are:

      Where Target Intersects Universe:Matches records where both sets of objects have any area in common.


      Where Target Contains Universe: Matches records where Target objects contain Universe objects in their entirety.

      Where Target Is Within Universe: Matches records where Target objects are entirely within Universe objects.

      Where TargetTouchesUniverse: Matches records where Target objects touches the outside boundary of Universe objects. To qualify as touching, neither object can occupy any of the same interior space.

      Where TargetTouches or IntersectsUniverse: Matches records where Target objects either share interior space with Universe objects, or touch the boundary of Universe objects.


      Bounding Rectangle Overlaps: Matches records where the bounding rectangles of Target objects and Universe objects share interior space.

      Custom DE91M Relation: User must be familiar with DE-91M relations to enter the custom value.

      When bringing Line type objects into the Spatial Match, matching is based on the bounding rectangle only.

    4. Notice the Check box to output the intersection polygon, when checked the intersection polygon will be included in downstream tools.
    6. This option is only available when Intersects option is selected, and is only relevant when matching  polygon to polygon.
    8. The intersection polygon refers ONLY to the area occupied by BOTH polygon Objects.
  1. From the configuration properties, you can rename fields, reorder fields, sort ascending/descending, and select the fields needed from the inputs.

    See Options for more information.

Output Streams of the Spatial Match Tool

There are two Output Streams on the Spatial Match tool:

For more information on the Spatial Match tool, see the Spatial Match Behavior page.