INSPIRE Knowledge Base

Call for experts on Extension of Download Service Technical Guidelines for Web Coverage Services (WCS)

Many INSPIRE spatial data themes (orthoimagery, elevation, geology, atmospheric conditions/meteorological geographical features, oceanographic geographical features, soil, land cover, natural risk zones, energy resources) include data that, according to the INSPIRE data specifications, have to be made available as coverages. The ‘Habitats and Biotopes’ and Environmental Monitoring Facilities’ specifications mention that the use of coverage model should be considered once mature implementations appear. Other data specifications such as 'Sea Regions' whilst not mandating data should be provided as coverages, would benefit from consideration within these guidelines.
The current TG for download services are based on Atom feeds (for pre-defined dataset download services) and WFS 2.0 (for pre-defined dataset and direct access download services). While coverage data can also be provided using Atom feeds or WFS, these options are not well suited for many coverage datasets, because single coverages are often several GB or even TB in size and users are typically only interested in some sub-set of the data, e.g. as defined by a user-defined bounding box or time period (trimming) or queries that reduce the dimension of the result coverage (slicing), e.g. extracting a temperature surface at a certain depth from a 3D ocean temperature coverage.
The MIG workshop on WCS-based INSPIRE download services on 14-15 /Oct/2014 demonstrated that all operations required by the Download Service IRs can be mapped to the WCS 2.0 standard, and that using a WCS for providing coverage data provides a number of benefits and opportunities. The workshop also illustrated that further guidelines or best practices are needed for how to provide harmonised INSPIRE coverage data through the WCS. Such guidelines should revisit and, if required, propose updates to the encoding guidelines currently included in the data specifications.
The INSPIRE MIG has decided to set up a temporary sub-group to develop such guidelines as part of action MIWP-7b. Please note that, to participate in the sub-group, you need to be registered in the INSPIRE pool of experts.
The main outputs of the sub-group will be:
  •  Updated Technical Guidelines for Download Services to include WCS
  • Technical Guidelines (or updates to existing technical guidelines) for the provision of coverage data in conformance with the INSPIRE data models using a WCS
  •  Open Source INSPIRE compliant WCS 2.0 implementation(s)  based on existing mature WCS 2.0 software
  •  Analysis of the impacts (e.g. costs) of implementing the updated Technical Guidelines

A detailed description of the scope, tasks and deliverables of the sub-group are available in the  Terms of Reference (ToR). Full details on how to apply are available on the MIG platform.

The initial deadline for applications is 31/May/2015.

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