In this paper, we present an algorithm for hidden surface removal for a class of polyhedral surfaces which have a property that they can be ordered relatively quickly. For example, our results apply directly to terrain maps. A distinguishing feature of our algorithm is that its running time is sensitive to the actual size of the visible image, rather than the total number of intersections in the image plane which can be much larger than the visible image. The time complexity of this algorithm is O((k + n) log2n) where n and k are, respectively, the input and the output sizes. Thus, in a significant number of situations this will be faster than the worst case optimal algorithms which have running time of Ω(n2) irrespective of the output size. © 1995.