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Marine Overlays on Topography for Annex II Valuation and Exploitation

Introduction to MOTIIVE

The European Union funded project MOTIIVE , to run from February 2005 to February 2007, explores operational aspects of land-sea data harmonisation and integration across disciplines and national borders in Europe. MOTIIVE will exploit the work already completed in regard to marine metadata (MarineXML) and related marine/coastal ontology development and interoperability technology, producing tools and methodologies.

At European regional level, the pan-European SDI - INSPIRE (Infrastructure for Spatial Information in Europe) recognises the importance of coastal/marine community information needs. Also at European level is the joint European Space Agency and European Commission programme GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) within which one of the six primary themes is "Ocean and Marine Applications". The MOTIIVE project specifically addresses the data harmonisation and information integration needs spanning the land-based INSPIRE initiative and the GMES ocean/marine theme.

MOTIIVE is part of the UNESCO MarineXML initiative and the outputs from MOTIIVE can be found at the official project website at [www.motiive.net][www.motiive.net] where you can also join the project mailing list which is linked to a number of other mailing list discussing marine data interoperability.

-- RobAtkinson - 16 Sep 2005
-- KieranMillard - 23 Jan 2008

MOTIIVE Contents


This section provides summary links to the evolving MOTIIVE outputs. MOTIIVE is ultimately developing a methodology, however as part of this standards to need to tested against the use-case. This testing process is realising a range of data models and test example in schema translation etcetera. Formal project deliverables can be found on the Motiive website. This includes a [Cost-Benefit spreadsheet. Used to score the implementation of system interoperabilitycost-benefit spreadsheet used to score the use of interoperability standards


Tools and Software


MOTIIVE is related to a number of activities as shown in the diagram below and summarised in the following sections and summarised in the diagram which shows Motiive in context with other initiatives. The types of relationships MOTIIVE has with other initiatives is described further below:

Joint Developments

This descirbes the MOTIIVE links where there is active joint collaboration to develop common tools and methodologies in accordance with the MOTIIVE workplan

Ideas Exchange

This describes the MOTIIVE links where MOTIIVE provides input/output at a strategic level. This ensures MOTIIVE takes account of INSPIRE and the marine community.

Expired Collaboration

This describes the MOTIIVE links where there has been collaboration in the past; however this collaboration is no longer active either because activities have been completed or the collaboration was not beneficial etcetera.

MOTIIVE Related Activities


MOTIIVE is actively engaged with the various OGC committees developing standards. MOTIIVE is presently sponsoring the implementation of a ‘Domain Modelling Working Group’ in the OGC. This was raised at the June 2006 OGC Technical Committee Meeting. It was determined that this WG would have more relevance than a ‘Marine WG’ because (i) there is already a ‘Natural Resources and Environment WG’ and (ii) the issues that MOTIIVE is addressing extend beyond the marine community. MOTIIVE will be able to achieve its objectives viz a viz the marine community by working within the proposed Domain Modelling WG, if this is accepted by the OGC. At this stage a common approach to domain modeling has been referred to the newly formed OGC Architecture Board, and business requirements are being generated in collaboration with the UNSDI and WMO liaisons.

IHO (International Hydrographic Organisation) Registry Project

Linking with the IHO registry project is a key part of MOTIIVE as we would like to demonstrate the deployment of services based on the concept of data store and service binding to a registry of Feature Types, as outlined above. Through UKHO project partner we are currently reviewing activities in this area with a view to feeding the MarineXML interoperability principles into the design, and progressing a design as an interoperability specification in its own right.

DNF (Digital National Framework) Offshore

This project is somewhat related to the above. The vision for DNF is to enable and support easy and reliable integration of business and geographic information regardless of who is responsible for its maintenance and where this is undertaken, thus achieving the goal of "plug and play information". It is a UK initiative driven in part by developments of the Ordnance Survey MasterMap. UKHO (via their subsiduary Seazone are looking to map the features in MasterMap to those in S-57 such that offshore data can be part of the the DNF. They recognise that this represents a limited set of marine features and are keen to work with MOTIIVE to look at the bigger picture. They are also working with Cadcorp on the use of WFS/WMS to deliver UKHO data; again they are keen to collaborate with MOTIIVE on this.


MARCOAST is delivering a range of services in the marine environment. The core MARCOAST services are: Water Quality, Algal Bloom and Water Quality reporting as well as oil spill related services. The prime on MARCOAST is also the prime on WIN developing an architecture for GMES. MOTIIVE have spoken with the technical team on WIN and they are looking at approaches to registry deployment along the EbRIM approach, but are unsure of next steps. They would be keen to collaborate in this area. MOTIIVE was presented at the GMES-Inspire collocation meeting in Frascati on 08/12/2006. As of 01/08/06 a good collaboration has been formed with WIN to work on a common approach to deploy a reference FTC implementation to support GMES. This will be undertakne in conjunction with the UK MetOfficeSystemsDevelopment. A copy of the presentationis given below.


The NMMP project is looking for a 'common data model' for marine biological sample data. This is essentially trawl and in-situ data at defined sites/platforms that is captured via Excell spreadsheets offline and then up-loaded to an Oracle database system. The team is looking a models for the database that covers sample / sample_Station / capture_Process / Phenonema in a generic way. OGC O&M Recommendation looks like a good place to start and they have been sent the latest version from Simon Cox (This is named OGC 05-087r2 but is strictly an in-progress revision of 05-087r1 which is a "Pending Document" on the OGC portal). The IBM team are looking at implementing the physical database model in January. They are more than happy to work with what is current and feed back into the pot the experience they had using this model for this particular project. It could also form the part of a MOTIIVE test case (except the FTC is private to NMMP). As of 01/08/06 the NMMP project has deployed a system, but O&M was not used as a base architecture. Not sure why, so need to find out.

Australian OBIS Node

The Australian OBIS node has been enabled with an OGC compliant WFS and WMS service solution as part of the OceansPortal and MarineSDI activity. Further work is underway to deploy the species taxonomy and other semantic services required to exploit such a node. The implementation pattern informs the MOTIIVE architecture. A future revision should apply an OGC Observations and Measurements based standard record format. It should be possible to integrate the existing implementation within the MOTIIVE testbed.

UK MetOfficeSystemsDevelopment

Interoperability is a key strand of the Met Office IT Architecture. The Met Office IT Architecture states the adoption of GML as the approach to achieving interoperability as it is the lingua-franca for exchange of geospatial information. Whilst the GML and OGC Web Services are reaching maturity, there is no accepted process for developing domain specific models from the GML toolkit. To accelerate the Met Office development, the Met Office is bringing together acknowledged GML/OGC experts from the environmental science community together to help realise a series of outcomes:

  • Develop interoperable UML information models based on GML toolkit; encode these models as GML �features�
  • Develop mechanism to define the operations permitted on specific features (i.e. what services are available to access the data)
  • Investigate use of open standard catalogue / registry technologies for publishing feature-type schemas, resource metadata and service descriptions

In pursuit of this goal, the Met Office sponsored a workshop (6-10 February 2006) to:
  • Establish a 'straw-man' application schema of the Geography Markup Language (GML) for a representative subset of information artefacts used in the operational meteorology domain in such a way that the schema is consistent with wider environmental science initiatives
  • Establish a process and methodology for further development of the application schema
  • Establish an implementation path to deliver a framework that enables interoperability; focusing on registries / catalogues and service

A communiqué produced as an outcome of this event reports on two main areas:

  • GML Application Schema Development. We considered the standards used to model geospatial data. Specifically we looked at the tools and standards that can be used to develop data models and how these can be realised in 'application schema' to enable data models to be incorporated into processing systems.
  • Achieving Interoperability. We considered the methods and approaches to making use of application schema in processing systems. We looked at 'what can be done' within the existing standards landscape, and what changes are required to improve this for the meteorological community.

As of 01/08/06 there is a large amount of activity in this area looking at both deployment of service orientated architectures and wider engagements with OGC. information More can be found on MetOfficeOperationalMeteorologyWorkshop. This includes a range of UML models and XML Schema

Unidata Common Data Model

Motiive partner CCLRC has been closely working with the Unidata team to examine the similarities that exist between ncML-GML and CSML. Attached is an article from the Unidata website (PDF of an HTML document) that gives a good background to NetCDF and ncML and the moves towards a Unidata Common Data Model (CDM). It begins with a set of definitions and descriptions of the underlying netCDF, HDF, and OPeNDAP technologies. Those descriptions are followed by an outline of the CDM as an effort to fuse the best characteristics of the existing data models which is more powerful than each of the others, but maintains the fundamental simplicity and ease of use of the original netCDF. Subsequent sections describe the fundamental scientific data types, the coordinate system layer and data access methods. This is followed by a description of the netCDF Markup Language (ncML), a dialect of XML, that can be used to represent and augment netCDF metadata. It is also the mechanism for netCDF dataset aggregation. Status updates and examples are provided where appropriate.

* CDM-TDS.pdf: Unidata paper on NetCDF, nc-ML and THREDDS

A workshop was sponsored by CCLRC in March 2007 to examine the overlaps between CDM, ncML-G, CSML and OGC's O&M. This brought together key participants from CCLRC, the UK MetOffice, Unidata, and CSIRO/OGC. Presentations and documents from the workshop are available.

RISE and INSPIRE Drafting Teams

The three-way partnership betwen MOTIIVE-RISE-Drafting Teams is difficult and complex to manage, particularly as there are partners of MOTIIVE and RISE on the drafting teams. This topic was discussed at the INPIRE-RISE-MOTIIVE meeting in Frankfurt on 13/12/2005, but nothing has concluded, other than agreement that the boundaries need to be clarified. It was agreeed the the original MOTIIVE:RISE collaboration model still holds. An approach would be that MOTIIVE focusses on the registry-service deployment issues and feeds this into the drafting team via Andrew Wolf.


MDIP is a UK Government-lead initiative to improve access to marine data. MOTIIVE partner HRW is a sponsoring organisation and also chairs the Standards working Group. MDIP provides a forum to understand the harmonisation needs of (mainly governmental) users and also provides direct evidence of the barriers caused by not having harmonisation frameworks in place. It is clear that users would like to be able construct data products for any particular puprose in an efficient and straightforward way. This is hampered by (i) lack of specifications for these given products and (ii) source data that resides inside 'private' (and undocumented) data models.

Users are familiar with the concept of data and metadata and have realised that metadata records i.e. an ISO-19115 'label' does not in itself afford the type of interoperabiltiy users aspire to. Users are less familiar or even ignorant of other TC211 standards and this includes the concept of defining (and subscribing to) common 'Feature Types'. Part of the problem for this is that there isn't a reference for users to follow to describe their data as Feature Types and there are an insufficient number of published Feature Types to be used. Lastly all this requires many of the producers to think about their data from a slightly different perspective - a considerable (and unfamiliar) task that may be hard to justify. Motiive has therefore a key role in demonstrating to users the cost-benefit of using these open standards whislt at the same time proving reference implementions of these standards to promote confidence in their use.

MOTIIVE Deployment


For the deployment, MOTIIVE will require multiple Feature Type Catalogues in multiple organisations. This implies the requirement for the deployment of a common Feature Type model (within registries) with common (Web) interfaces. This could make use of CSW or OGC Catalogue service on top of an ebRIM meta-model MOTIIVE Feature Types will be mutli-dimensional (3D + time + parameters) and will need to maintain a separation between semantics and packaging (for example as different coverage encodings). MOTIIVE Feature Types will provide information about ability to support processing operations and this needs to be reflected in the FTC implemented by RISE/MOTIIVE

A Enterprise Architect file with Release 1 revision 0 (R1r0) of the Use Case and Deployment is given below and in the list of attachments. This is presently (01.08.06) being revised by Andrew Woolf.

* Motiive_Concept_R1r0.zip: Motiive Deployment and Use Case (Enterprise Architect)

Use Case

The use case is based around the demonstation of 'cost-benefit' in using open-standards. The Motiive High Level Use Case Model is built around the observation that any application of data is dependent on a supporting process as follows:

1. The data must be sourced from somewhere. 2. The data is processed in some way (even if this is just copying the dataset). 3. The processing results are presented to a user community. 4. An end user views and applies the data to a real world problem.

The four main roles of Data Supplier, Data Processor, Data Presenter and Data Viewer reflect this inherent process. The Data Supplier, Processor and Presenter each create Data Supply, Processing and Presentation Services respectively. It is also noted that these services may be extended and reapplied in various contexts. Each of these services require data query and data repackaging. The hypothesis is that open standards can lead to a reduction in the effort required for these steps.

The realisation of this use case is based on navigating a FTC and exposing different services depending on the representation of the data. Motiive will consider different representations of the conceptual 'water level' data model. Each will have different storage model, processing affordance etc. In MOTIIVE will probably have numerical model and tide gauge data. The numerical model data is also likely to have tidal currents. The key requirement of this use case is to enable a user (Data Viewer) to be able to extract information from the water level data through the means of different portrayal of the data. The portrayal applied is a function of the the 'processing affordance' of the representational view of the data.

Deployment Pilot

We have a large number of pieces that we could fit together into a pilot. These are:
  • Hydrographic data from the "IHO Registry / DNF work". This could provide a WFS interface onto hydrographic data held at EDINA
  • We also have water level data from HRW, ARGOSS and NERSC. Both these are project partners and have the role to test exposing their data holdings via a common interface. Both these data would be coverage types and we would need to provide advice to them on what software deployment was required.
  • RISE are interested in a 'joint pilot' where land-based information is supplied through their interoperability demonstrator.
  • Data from the MARCOAST project made available via WFS

This revised deployment extends the Rob Atkinson ideas mocked-up at the Motiive workshop at HRW in Feb 2006. Taking the various roles and actors from the Use Case diagram. Motiive Deployment (R1r0):
Data Supplier / Processor We have four organisations that act as 'suppliers' of water level and tidal current data. HRW, ARGOSS, NERSC and UKHO. These all supply different represenations of water-level and tidal data, but all expose their data (as features) through some WxS specification. As the representations of water level and tidal currents are different, the feature instances will not be the same. CSML could be used as the FTC to define the coverage representation. There will also be water and tidal information in the 'UKHO' FTC , but from what UKHO said at the Exeter week, these represenations are very much GFM based.

Data Viewer THe data viewer will want to discover the availability of the water level data and would require information on its representational view (to determine if it will be of use). He will want to refine his query (using DAQM) to he gets data of the right representational view and in the correct spatio:temporal window. THe discovery portal (EDINA) may have some basic view tools for the data (location on map but also perhaps show a data view - x,y/t etc.). Maps come from 'MarineMasterMap.

DataPresenter Although the portal is an elementary data presenter, we may want to do some more sophisiticated data presentation to tailor the data to provide more specific information. This may inlcude combining several data sets. For example a x,t, of water level overlayed with adminisative coastline, or a tidal elipse. HRW will do this [we'll provide the visulaisation library - need to look at the FT to library bindings].

Demonstration Software

Feature Type Catalogue

The link is a simple browse client to the Feature Type Catalogue. The following FT's are loaded
  • GML
  • Observations & Measurements
  • CSML
  • RISE
The FTC is hosted at the University of Edinburgh, UK. The RISE FT's were those developed by the RISE project to describe water bodies related to the Water Framework Directive. The MOTIIVE FT's are specialisations of a generic FT for a 'point series observation', which in turn is a specialisation of GML. The MOTIIVE FT's are demonstrating how a community requiring a detailed data model for an environmental observation does not need to write this data model (FT) from scratch. Indeed they should take a building block representing generic environmental observations (in this case CSML) and specialise it to meet their needs.

Browse interface to the Motiive FTC

Web Feature Service

This is a link to the a service delivering instances of MOTIIVE Feature Types which are specialisations of CSML Feature Types. Both these FT's are lodged in the MOTIIVE FTC. The WFS is hosted at HR Wallingford, UK. The WFS is implemented using Geoserver.

Motiive WFS delivering 'Tidal Level Time Series'

Web Coverage Service

NERSC deployment of UMN MapServer for WCS delivery of forecast data

In spring 2007, NERSC installed UMN MapServer (v,4.10.0) and started test of WCS delivery of NetCDF files. The software could deliver gridded data in NetCDF files, but the header information was not transferred correctly. For instance, the name of the layer (band) was replaced by a default name by GDAL ("Band1"), the scaling of the values appeared to have changed (uncorrect processing of offset and scale factor), and the coordinate system in the WCS delivered file differs from the original, cartesian coordinates (x,y) starting from (0,0) instead of geographic coordinates (lat,lon), which was used in the NetCDF file read by UMN MapServer. Problems with handling of NetCDF files in GDAL (Geospatial Data Abstraction Library) were known, and Sander Hulst, ARGOSS, started work on improving the netcdf driver so that geo-referencing information was retained, as well as offset and scale factor. A new version of the netcdf driver was made available to NERSC in October 2007.

With this latest version of the netcdf driver for GDAL, the forecast data are delivered with geo-referencing parameters (in variable GDAL_Geographics). The offset/scale problem has been corrected, while the output coordinate system is still cartesian, and the default names for variables are "Band1", "Band2", etc. Despite improvements in the netcdf driver, the WCS delivered files are not CF compliant. The online compliance checker reports the following error message for one of the WCS delivered files:

 Checking variable: GDAL_Geographics
ERROR: Invalid grid_mapping_name: Geographics Coordinate System

The netcdf driver for GDAL is being updated by the GDAL user community and later version may well have solved more of the remaining problems experienced in MOTIIVE, even if it is not possible to incorporate these developments within the framework of the current project.

the NERSC web map server has the updated NetCDF driver provided by ARGOSS, meaning that data will be delivered with geographic coordinates in variable GDAL_Geographics. However, the y-axis is swapped, i.e. pixel at y=0 is the highest latitude.

Selected dates in Jan 2004, 2006, 2007 and March 2006 are extracted from the FES2004 dataset. Area 51-52N, 0.5-2E.


ARGOSS have set up a WCS service for tidal data. The netCDF driver (GDAL) has been updated such that the output is CF compliant. Unfortunately there are still some issues with metadata that is not copied to the output (with _FillValue being the most critical one) but I cannot solve that at short notice. It is a reported bug in MapServer but we probably have to fix it ourselves as the netCDF part in MapServer is not well maintained.

Note that we currently provide the following coverages:
  • tide.glob.z (global height)
  • tide.glob.u (global east component current)
  • tide.glob.v (global north component current)
  • tide.tham.z (height in Thames estuary)
  • tide.tham.u (east component current in Thames estuary)
  • tide.tham.v (north component current in Thames estuary)

  • it is not possible to request time periods, only single points in time.
  • currently we only have generated data for Jan 2007, the rest will follow.

MOTIIVE Meetings

Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
0_Guide_to_publishing_data_services_v1.trem.docdoc 0_Guide_to_publishing_data_services_v1.trem.doc manage 975.5 K 26 Mar 2007 - 19:34 KristinStock This document is from the Oceans Portal (which may be used as a basis for the Motiive demonstration) and describes the method for participants in the SDI to create a web service and populate the registry appropriately.
CDM-TDS.pdfpdf CDM-TDS.pdf manage 2150.3 K 07 Apr 2007 - 05:13 KieranMillard Unidata paper on NetCDF, nc-ML and THREDDS
ConceptDiagram_R0r2.pngpng ConceptDiagram_R0r2.png manage 49.7 K 19 Dec 2005 - 05:50 KieranMillard Motiive in context with other initiatives
ConceptDiagram_R0r2.vsdvsd ConceptDiagram_R0r2.vsd manage 219.5 K 19 Dec 2005 - 05:26 KieranMillard Motiive in context with other initiatives
ConceptDiagram_R0r3.pngpng ConceptDiagram_R0r3.png manage 49.7 K 19 Dec 2005 - 05:56 KieranMillard Motiive in context with other initiatives
FTCTransaction(Insert)_v0.1.xmlxml FTCTransaction(Insert)_v0.1.xml manage 67.5 K 25 Jan 2008 - 02:23 KieranMillard FTCTransaction(Insert)
GMESCollocation_Motiive_R0r3.pptppt GMESCollocation_Motiive_R0r3.ppt manage 1294.0 K 05 Jan 2006 - 22:40 KieranMillard GMES-Inspire Workshop - Frascati
GML_WG_Report_to_TC.pptppt GML_WG_Report_to_TC.ppt manage 254.0 K 10 Oct 2006 - 03:14 KieranMillard  
GetFeatureTypeById.xmlxml GetFeatureTypeById.xml manage 1.6 K 25 Jan 2008 - 02:24 KieranMillard GetFeatureTypeByID
LISAsoft_CatServices-LS-060103-V0.1.docdoc LISAsoft_CatServices-LS-060103-V0.1.doc manage 556.5 K 26 Mar 2007 - 19:39 KristinStock This document describes the Lisasoft catalogue (addition to Cubewerx) used for the Oceans Portal (which may be a basis for the Motiive demonstrator).
MOTIIVE_Extended_Summary_Nov05.docdoc MOTIIVE_Extended_Summary_Nov05.doc manage 145.0 K 23 Dec 2005 - 21:42 KieranMillard Extended Extract
MOTIIVE_WFD.pngpng MOTIIVE_WFD.png manage 713.5 K 19 Dec 2005 - 05:40 KieranMillard An example output of the MOTIIVE pilot (?)
MOTIIVEprojectarchitecturalroadmap.docdoc MOTIIVEprojectarchitecturalroadmap.doc manage 43.0 K 16 Sep 2005 - 18:11 RobAtkinson Draft architecture - to convert to WIKI text!
Motiive_Concept_R1r0.zipzip Motiive_Concept_R1r0.zip manage 387.0 K 03 Aug 2006 - 04:46 KieranMillard Motiive Deployment and Use Case (Enterprise Architect)
Motiive_D11b_CBAWorksheet_R2r0.xlsxls Motiive_D11b_CBAWorksheet_R2r0.xls manage 41.5 K 25 Jan 2008 - 07:15 KieranMillard Cost-Benefit spreadsheet. Use to score the implementation of system interoperability
OGC_Web_Services_and_GML_Modelling_for_Operational_Meteorology--communique_V1.pdfpdf OGC_Web_Services_and_GML_Modelling_for_Operational_Meteorology--communique_V1.pdf manage 150.0 K 22 Sep 2006 - 22:02 KieranMillard Exeter Communique on Domain Modelling
WorkingDraftS100FrameworkDocument.docdoc WorkingDraftS100FrameworkDocument.doc manage 522.0 K 12 Jun 2006 - 21:21 KieranMillard How to build a TC211 conformant Product Specification for Hydrographic Information
architecture.EAPEAP architecture.EAP manage 2118.0 K 20 Sep 2005 - 20:03 KieranMillard Motiive Deployment (Draft) Enterprise Architect
deployment01.PNGPNG deployment01.PNG manage 14.2 K 16 Sep 2005 - 18:12 RobAtkinson working draft deployment diagram
deploymentDiagram.xmlxml deploymentDiagram.xml manage 80.3 K 20 Sep 2005 - 19:51 KieranMillard Mottive Deployment Diagram (Draft) as XMI
ebFTC_MDM.v1.1(Insert).xmlxml ebFTC_MDM.v1.1(Insert).xml manage 16.3 K 25 Jan 2008 - 02:10 KieranMillard ebFTC_MDM
ebFTC_OM.v2.2.xmlxml ebFTC_OM.v2.2.xml manage 59.0 K 25 Jan 2008 - 02:22 KieranMillard ebFTC_OM
oceansportaldesignspec.zipzip oceansportaldesignspec.zip manage 1756.3 K 26 Mar 2007 - 19:37 KristinStock This is the design spec for the Oceans Portal (which is likely to be extended and expanded for the Motiive demonstrator).
storedquery-getFeatureTypes.xmlxml storedquery-getFeatureTypes.xml manage 2.7 K 25 Jan 2008 - 02:25 KieranMillard StoredQuery - GetFeatureTypes
Topic revision: r26 - 15 Oct 2010, UnknownUser

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