Bathymetry | Central Portal

Bathymetry link

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bathymetry status overbox

The EMODnet data infrastructure is being constructed in three major phases and is currently in the 2nd phase of development (2013 - 2016). Building on the EMODnet Bathymetry portal developed during Phase I (2009-2013), EMODnet Bathymetry is currently enhancing and expanding existing services to move, together with the six other EMODnet sub-portals, towards an operational service with full coverage of all European sea-basins, a wider selection of parameters and higher resolution data products.

Bathymetry text

Bathymetry is the information that describes the topography of the seabed, as depth from the sea surface to the seafloor. It is an essential component in understanding the dynamics of the marine environment. Safe ocean navigation relies on accurate bathymetry data, which are also essential for planning marine installations and infrastructure such as wind turbines, coastal defences, oil platforms and pipelines. Bathymetry forms the foundation of any comprehensive marine dataset; without it, the picture is incomplete.

Objectives of EMODnet Bathymetry

EMODnet Bathymetry aims to provide a single access point to bathymetric products, Digital Terrain Models (DTM) and data (survey data sets and composite DTM) collected and managed by an increasing number of organisation from government and research scattered over Europe


Key services provided by EMODnet Bathymetry

The EMODNet Bathyemtry portal provides a range of services and functionalities to users for viewing and downloading bathymetry data products and for identifying and requesting access to the survey data sets that are used as basis input for the DTM. Currently the following key services and functionality are provided for users:

  1. Data Discovery and Access service: provides functionality to search and obtain survey data sets;
  2. Composite Products Discovery and Access service: provides functionality to search and view metadata of composite DTM;
  3. Bathymetry Viewing and Download service: provides functionality to view, browse and download digital bathymetry as DTM and obtain information about the underlying data sets used to compile the DTM.


To acheive a fully operational Bathymetry portal, the following are underway:

  1. Establishment of an inventory of available bathymetric data sets acquired and managed by relevant research institutes, monitoring authorities, and national hydrographic services;
  2. Development of regional DTM using selected survey data sets and processing these by regional teams using a common methodology for QA – QC;
  3. Development of an overall EMODnet DTM with a gridsize of ⅛*⅛ arc minutes by integrating the regional DTM and loading this into a geospatial database.

Data sources

The partners of EMODnet Bathymetry combine expertise and experiences of collecting, processing, and managing bathymetric data, together with expertise in distributed data infrastructure development and operation and providing of discovery, access and viewing services according to INSPIRE implementation rules and international standards (ISO, OGC).


For the purpose of collecting hydrographic data sets, such as multibeam surveys from scientific cruises, several types of hydrographic data providers were engaged.


EMODnet Bathymetry product development

Digital Terrain Model are based on 3 types of bathymetric data sources. 

  • Bathymetric surveys, such as single and multibeam surveys, echosoundings and even historic leadline soundings. These data sets are most preferred as data sources because of their high resolution.
  • Composite data sets, giving a gridded bathymetry, provided by Hydrographic Offices (HO’s) from the Digital Terrain Models that they maintain themselves for producing and maintaining their nautical charts following international IHO procedures.
  • GEBCO 30” gridded data. GEBCO 2014 is used by the EMODNet project to complete area coverage in case there are no survey data or composite data sets available to the partners.

Improvements in the current development Phase II (2013-2016)

  • Higher resolution DTM (⅛ rather than ¼ of an arc minute);
  • Fuller coverage (now includes Baltic, Black Sea and Norwegian Sea).

Hydrography Pic

Bathymetry DataBox

Leading partner

Total no. of partners


Available Data and Products



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