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Release of new 2020 EMODnet DTM for the European seas

13 January 2021

An upgraded version of the EMODnet Digital Bathymetry (DTM) for the European Seas has just been released. This new EMODnet Bathymetry product benefits from significant developments and expert inputs in 2019-2020, including new data gathering, reprocessed data, thorough selection of the best data sources and use of innovative bathymetric sensors (such as Satellite Derived Bathymetry). It allows users to visualise bathymetric features with greater detail, in addition to providing a powerful 3D visualisation functionality covering all European seas, including the Arctic and Barents Sea, and greater accuracy along European coastlines, thanks to the integration of both in-situ and satellite datasets. As before, it is available free of charge for viewing and downloading, and sharing by OGC web services from the EMODnet Bathymetry portal.

The EMODnet DTM is a tool used for a whole range of applications in marine science, sustainable ocean governance, and blue economy activities such as planning of pipeline trajectories, locations of offshore wind farms or planning of harbour extensions. In science, the DTM supports oceanographers in providing a base geometry for hydrodynamic models, marine geologists for studying dynamic morphological processes, and biologists in contributing to the generation of seabed habitat maps. An improved DTM also contributes to reducing risks for damage to coastal and offshore installations and public safety by improving our ability to forecast storm surges for example.   

After a decade of European collaborations and technological developments, the new EMODnet Bathymetry product release offers:

  • DTM with 1/16 * 1/16 arc minutes (circa 115 * 115 metres) grid resolution covering all European seas from the Mediterranean Sea, the Black Sea, the North-East Atlantic Ocean, up to the Arctic Ocean and Barents Sea;
  • A source reference layer and a quality index layer pointing directly to one of the 16241 bathymetric survey data sets and 120 composite DTMs used in the 2020 version;
  • Catalogues with over 30.200 unique descriptions of data surveys, composite DTMs and Satellite Derived Bathymetry products originating and gathered from more than 50 European data holders, covering European coasts, sea regions and global oceans,  in co-operation with the European SeaDataNet infrastructure;
  • Snapshots of bathymetric DTM products at a higher resolution (up to approx. 10m) than the full DTM;
  • Best-estimate European coastlines at LAT, MSL, and MHW, determined from satellite data in combination with the Global Tide Surge Model (GTSM)
  • Inventory of official baseline and coastline data as collected from 26 national authorities in Europe;
  • Powerful 3D visualisation functionalities;
  • Integration of the latest GEBCO 2020 and IBCAO 4.0 grids;
  • Extensive user interfaces and OGC web services, also providing the 2019 EMODnet Bathymetry World Base Layer (EBWBL);
  • An associated DOI for the new 2020 EMODnet DTM.

“We are releasing the EMODnet Bathymetry 2020 DTM product, at the dawn of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for sustainable development, as a clear proof of the European contribution to the world seabed mapping effort. With this upgraded version of the EMODnet Bathymetry DTM, we allow users to have an easy and free access to high quality bathymetric data which can drastically improve their work.”, declared Thierry Schmitt from SHOM (Service hydrographique et océanographique de la marine), the French Naval Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service, Coordinator of EMODnet Bathymetry.

With the ambition to refine further the quality and the resolution of the DTM, considering both European offshore waters and coastal zones, EMODnet invites potential high - resolution bathymetric data providers to help generate an even better DTM product. Visit also our EMODnet Data Ingestion portal to learn more how you can contribute with your bathymetric data sets!

Also see the official EMODnet Press Release.