A novel method is described for surface profile extraction based on morphological processing of multiple range sensor data. The approach taken is extremely flexible and robust, in addition to being simple and straightforward. It can deal with arbitrary numbers and configurations of sensors as well as synthetic arrays. The method has the intrinsic ability to suppl css spurious readings, crosstalk, and higher-order reflections, and process multiple reflections informatively. The performance of the method is investigated by analyzing its dependence on surface structure and distance, sensor beamwidth, and noise on the time-of-flight measurements. (C) 2001 Pattern Recognition Society. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.