Welcome to the MarineDWG web


Two-thirds of the earth is ocean, it is the source of our food, energy, it governs our climate, it is the main method for transporting goods around the world, yet only 5% of it has been mapped and charted at high resolution. In order to increase this meager coverage, it is important to reach a broader group of stakeholders, as it is unlikely that this percentage will increase dramatically purely for the purpose of safe navigation. By considering the wider use cases we increase the potential for additional sources of funding for this important survey work. To dramatically increase this coverage will require much technological advancement in order to create force multipliers around data collection sensors and devices, new processing and production techniques. It is critical that the data collected in increasing volumes by an increasing number of data sources can be used effectively and in a standardized way by a much wider group of stakeholders to support a Blue Economy.

Geospatial data in the marine domain has been successfully standardized for navigational purposes by hydrographic agencies for many years. This has allowed mariners to safely navigate oceans, ports, and waterways anywhere on earth. The core data that support this activity is now in demand for a much wider range of applications (e.g., environmental protection, emergency response, offshore energy, and fisheries) and as such interoperability of this data is more important than ever before.

High resolution bathymetric grids and points clouds, and seafloor sediment mosaics are captured by the IHO S-102 product specification for coverage data, but may require further standardization to be interoperable with the broader geospatial community. This is further amplified with the increasing popularity of capturing water column data, HD camera mosaics of seafloor infrastructure and also the appearance of new data structures for modelling bathymetry called variable resolution grids. The offshore oil and gas community are utilizing the IOGP Seafloor Survey Data Model increasingly. This model has a GML schema for exchange called Seabed Markup Language. In order to support a concept of “collect once use many times” it is important to understand how data can be used effectively by the Oil and Gas industry and the Hydrographic Offices and the wider community.

Data volumes are increasing as more sophisticated marine sensors are being used (e.g., sonar, bathymetric LIDAR, and laser scanners). More data sources are also being exploited (e.g., survey vessels, unmanned drones (AUVs, USVs), satellite derived measurements, crowd sourced observations). To cope with the increasing data volumes and sources research is required into efficient and standardized sensor processing and management techniques.

The Marine DWG has been established to address the gap in the OGC baseline with regards to marine geospatial data and to ensure knowledge is exchanged effectively between the relevant standards organizations, the OGC membership and the broader geospatial community. Although this group will not be the platform for creating new standards, it will be the platform to discuss and understand any issues, concerns, or barriers to interoperability to ensure that marine data can be used effectively by the wider community.. Membership will be open to those with an interest in the marine geospatial data community. Active membership is defined by regular member contributions of material or participation in Marine DWG meetings and discussions.The group will facilitate discussion of the requirements that define different exchange methods and formats to ensure that data used for navigation can also be used within the broader realm of MSDI for non-navigational purposes.

Please review the full Marine DWG Charter for more information.

Planned Activities

1. Serve as OGC TC focal point for complementary organizations that are working on MSDI best practices, such as the IHO MSDI Working Group and potentially other IHO committees.

2. Discuss the content of a conceptual model for MSDI

3. Research the requirements and processes needed to use S-57 and S-101 chart data for purposes other than safe navigation.

4. Research the requirements and processes needed to use high-resolution bathymetry data for purposes other than safe navigation.

5. Explore the potential for an interoperability testbed to carry out these research activities and find sponsors and partners.

6. Promote the development of OGC best practices and standards to meet the technical needs of MSDI.


Domain Working Groups in OGC are, by default, open to all for participation. If you are interested in joining the group, please subscribe to the mailing list at this link.

Partner Organisations

The group works in close collaboration with the IHO MSDI Working group and liaise with the IOGP Geomatics Committee where logical.

Meeting Schedule

The Marine DWG aims to meet during the quarterly OGC Technical Meetings and at other times in order to better coordinate with, for example, IHO and other related meetings and activities. The group is in the process of planning next steps.

2017 Meetings

  • Monday, January 30th, 2017 Vancouver, B.C. Canada, in advance of the IHO MSDIWG- 8 meetings. Agenda and Presentations, OutComes
  • Tuesday, March 21st, Delft, NL, 16.30-1745, During the OGC TC/Meeting. Agenda
  • The week of June 26th-29th, St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada (specific time and date TBD)
  • The week of September 11th-14th, Southampton, UK (specific time and date TBD)

2017 WorkPlan

2018 Meetings


MarineDWG Actions


More Information?

If you have any questions, please contact the Co-chairs of the Marine DWG; Andy Hoggarth ( andrew.hoggarth@teledyneNOspamPlease.com ), Sebastian Carisio ( sebastian.p.carisio@ngaNOspamPlease.mil ), Jon Pritchard ( jonathan.pritchard@ukhoNOspamPlease.gov.uk )

The OGC staff points of contact are Trevor Taylor ( ttaylor@opengeospatialNOspamPlease.org ) and Scott Simmons ( ssimmons@opengeospatialNOspamPlease.org )

MarineDWG Web Utilities

Topic revision: r13 - 15 Feb 2019, SebastianCarisio
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