Enabling the efficient flow, management and visualization of sensor data
When speaking of Geospatial Sensing, we refer to all aspects related to capturing, managing, discovering, sharing, and visualizing data that describes the past, current, or future state of the environment. This type of data includes, not only data generated by sensors, but also information captured by humans, as well as predictions calculated through models. In the Geospatial Sensing lab, we explore emerging technologies that facilitate the handling of geospatial sensing data in order to support our customers and partners.
Our team focuses on new approaches for collecting, managing, sharing and visualizing sensor data. Currently, the lab addresses the following challenges:
- Connecting to sensor hardware: investigating how to efficiently integrate new sensors into (research) data infrastructures, while considering sensor plug-and-play as well as relevant Internet of Things technologies (e.g., MQTT).
- Data storage and management: optimizing data models for efficient data storage, providing metadata to ensure the correct interpretation of sensor
data sets, or using and enhancing vocabularies for ensuring semantic inter-operability.
- Data availability to users: advancing access interfaces and encodings for sensor data and enabling push-based/event-driven communication patterns to ensure a timely delivery of data.
- Access control: developing strategies for providing user/group-based access to (dynamic) sensor data sets/streams.
- Data visualization: improving methods for visualizing and exploring sensor data to allow for a better communication of the gathered information.
- Humans as sensors: making it easier to set up citizen observatory initiatives by providing dedicated reusable building blocks.
Our activities also lead to active contributions to international standardization efforts. We drive interoperability aspects through our participation in the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) and the European INSPIRE framework.
Open source software is an important result of our research activities. In addition to our suite of well-established Sensor Web components (e.g. OGC Sensor Observation Service implementation, our Helgoland API, and the Helgoland Sensor Web viewer), which are used in operational systems, we are regularly publish prototypes that demonstrate and provide an entry point to new technologies. Our work is available via our GitHub repositories.