Blog post

Big Data on the Ocean Floor

Feb 3, 2014

SCALGO and the Danish Geodata Agency under the Danish Ministry of the Environment have entered into a collaborative project to develop methods for the semi-automatic production of nautical charts. The collaboration will focus on optimizing the production of nautical charts for the waters surrounding Greenland.

Contemporary scanning equipment measures the ocean floor with very high precision and accurary, enabling the production of high quality digital models. The high acquisition precision combined with large survey areas results in very large amounts of data. The primary challenge of the project is to analyze this data and produce accurate and precise nautical charts conforming to strict cartographic standards. This challenge will be met using intelligent surface and depth contour (isobath) simplification powered by SCALGO's technology for processing big data sets. The simplification will ensure that the final model preserves all significant features in the ocean floor while discarding irrelevant and spurious information.

The collaboration will be founded on the Danish Geodata Agency's comprehensive experience in computing nautical charts and SCALGO's unique technology for producing precise, accurate and understandable topographic maps. SCALGO sees this as an exciting challenge and looks forward to pushing the underlying technology significantly to meet the strict cartographic requirements.

Information about SCALGO technology, products and services can be found at Future information about SCALGO products and services can also be received directly through Twitter and Facebook.

SCALGO Contours shown on the surface of a digital elevation model

Scalable Algorithmics (SCALGO) was founded with the mission to bring cutting-edge big terrain data processing technology to market. The SCALGO technology is based on more than two decades of basic and applied research on I/O-efficient and geometric algorithms at Center for Massive Data Algorithmics (MADALGO) at Aarhus University in Denmark and at Duke University in the US, in collaboration with industry LiDAR and environmental GIS application experts. SCALGO provides a range of desktop software, analysis and online large-area detailed terrain data set processing and analysis products.