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Where does gazebo search for the root.sdf file?

Hi together,

I compiled gazebo 9.0.0 from source with reference to sdformat 6.0.0. Now when I try to start the gzserver with the world "worlds/empty.world" I get the following error:

Error [parser.cc:48] Unable to load file[]
Gazebo multi-robot simulator, version 9.0.0
Copyright (C) 2012 Open Source Robotics Foundation.
Released under the Apache 2 License.
http://gazebosim.org

[Msg] Waiting for master.
[Msg] Connected to gazebo master @ http://127.0.0.1:11345
[Msg] Publicized address: 192.168.132.253
[Err] [RenderEngine.cc:725] Can't open display: 
[Wrn] [RenderEngine.cc:93] Unable to create X window. Rendering will be disabled
[Wrn] [RenderEngine.cc:293] Cannot initialize render engine since render path type is NONE. Ignore this warning ifrendering has been turned off on purpose.
Error [parser.cc:77] Unable to find or open SDF file[root.sdf]
[Err] [Server.cc:388] Unable to initialize sdf
[Wrn] [Server.cc:338] Falling back on worlds/empty.world
Error [parser.cc:77] Unable to find or open SDF file[root.sdf]
[Err] [Server.cc:388] Unable to initialize sdf

process with pid 3648 terminated by signal SIGSEGV with status: 139 (core dumped!)

The fact that gazebo cannot open the display is ok for me since gazebo is running headlessly on the robot (yes, that might seem strange but in the end it makes sense ^^).

My SDFormat library is not installed in the standard path (e.g. /usr) but in a special directory for foreign packages. To me it seems that I should tell gazebo via any environment variable where to search for root.sdf but I don't know how to do that.

I would be very thankful if anyone could give me a hint.

Thanks and cheers
Adrian