Jun 02, 2014

OGC Extensions to Web Coverage Service Standard Improve Access to Earth Data

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The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) Membership has approved six OGC Web Coverage Service (WCS) Interface Standard extensions as official OGC standards. These WCS extensions significantly expand the ability of researchers, environmental managers, disaster managers, policy advisers and others to access the world’s network-distributed Earth imaging data resources.

The OGC Web Coverage Service (WCS) Interface Standard defines an interface for requesting coverage data, such as sensor data, satellite imagery, image time series, point clouds, and TINs (triangulated irregular networks). The six new WCS Extensions specify standard mechanisms for providing additional control over the processing of a coverage during its server-side processing:

  • GML Application Schema – Coverages – GeoTIFF Coverage Encoding Profile: Returns a coverage in GeoTIFF encoding, in addition to formats like the OGC Geography Markup Language (GML) Encoding Standard.
  • WCS Range Subsetting Extension: Specifies a standard way to extract specific fields from the range set of a coverage as part of the data request. For example, in remote sensing this is known as “band” or “channel” subsetting and in climate modeling it is called “variable extraction”.
  • WCS Scaling Extension: Specifies parameters to a request to provide control over scaling of a coverage during its server-side processing.
  • WCS Interpolation Extension: Enables clients to specify the interpolation method that the server shall apply to a coverage.
  • WCS Processing Extension: Specifies the standard service interface to the Web Coverage Processing Service (WCPS) query language. WCPS extends WCS functionality with a high-level query language for server-side filtering and processing of multi-dimensional Big Data.
  • WCS Earth Observation Profile: Defines a profile of WCS 2.0 for use on Earth Observation data.

All OGC standards are free and publicly available at http://www.opengeospatial.org/standards. An overview and downloads of the complete WCS suite are available at http://www.opengeospatial.org/standards/wcs.

The OGC is an international consortium of more than 475 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC standards support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at http://www.opengeospatial.org/contact.