geo-extension-nonWGS84

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Geo Extension Straw-Man Proposal

Further to proposals for luna and mars equivalents to Geo, the following is a "straw-man" proposal, to incorporate those ideas (and likewise for other bodies) into geo, in order that further debate may take place. Please feel free to critique it harshly but fairly!

Author

Andy Mabbett

Straw-Man

<span class="geo">

  <span class="body">
    Mars [1]
  </span>

  <span class="reference frame">
    [name of mapping schema] [2]
  </span>

  <span class="latitude">37.386013</span>, 
  <span class="longitude">-122.082932</span> [3]
</span>

Notes

  1. A list of acceptable, case-insensitive, values for 'body' would need to be drawn up (e.g. "Earth", "Mars", "Moon", "Venus", etc.) wither "Earth" being assumed if none is specified.
  2. A list of acceptable values for 'reference frame' would need to be drawn up, for each body, with one being declared the default, to be used if no value is present (geo for Earth uses the datum of WGS84).
  3. As currently with geo, if the "latitude" and "longitude" classes are omitted, the two values MUST be separated by a semi-colon and latitude MUST be first:<span class=geo">37.386013;-122.082932</span>
Also:
  • If latitude is present, so MUST be longitude, and vice versa.
  • The same number of decimal places SHOULD be used in each value.
  • The Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature has coordinates for other planets, e.g. Venus and moons, e.g. Io.

Issues

  • Should other bodies be included in geo, or have stand-alone microformats?
  • What effect will this have on existing 'geo' parsers, and it is safe to ignore that?
  • What appropriate "reference frame" sets exist?
    • Earth: WGS84, ITRF2005
    • Moon: Mean Earth Polar Axis
    • Mars: IAU2000
      • 'Report of the IAU/IAG Working Group on Cartographic Coordinates and Rotational Elements of the Planets and Satellites: 2000', Celestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy 82: 83-110, 2002 [1]
  • Moon is the preferred name, per [ http://planetarynames.wr.usgs.gov/ IAU nomenclature working group]
  • Is it appropriate to use the name "geo" (which means "Earth") for other bodies?
  • is body an acceptable class name, given that it's also an HTML element?

Comments

thare

Comments from thare

  • geo does stand for Earth but it has previously been generalized for the planetary case. For example, the term geology is used for planetary bodies.
  • using body is fine by me and do not see a conflict as an HTML element.
  • by schema do you mean a natural surficial property like earthquake, volcano, or crater? Or do you also want to include man-made items building, house, landing site?
    • No, I mean, for example, WGS84, or the Martian or lunar equivalents. Is "schema" perhaps the wrong word?. Andy Mabbett
  • I would suggest just using "Moon". For other spellings for planetary bodies I would look toward the IAU/IAG documentation (an international working group) IAU/IAG Working Group (WG) on Cartographic Coordinates and Rotational Elements
  • Since this is a simple case, I tried to stay away from this issue but just can't. What does Earth really mean? There a many definitions for the size of Earth that need to be resolved when using lat/lon coordinates. Is the size of the Earth defined by the WGS84 or NAD27 definition? For Mars, is it the definition used in 1991 or redefined in 2000? This has previously been solved in web GIS applications by using an "EPSG" code. For planetary bodies we are attempting to define a similar coded standard which currently is called the IAU2000 code or namespace. Thus for Mars the code might be IAU2000:49900.
  • still working - more later

Brent A. Archinal

(reproduced from e-mail to Andy Mabbett, by kind permission)

  • I appreciate the information you've provided and certainly the general idea of using "microformats" to indicate geographical location of points on solar system bodies is interesting.
  • As to any comments on the general idea or any specific implementation, I think my colleague, Trent Hare, has already addressed any primary concerns or questions (above).
  • The main issue seems to be that both the body, and the specific definition (technically a "reference frame") in question need to be specified, e.g. 1) Earth, ITRF2005, 2) Moon, ULCN 2005, 3) Mars, "IAU2000" or similar. Note that these frames are actually realizations of various "reference systems" 1) ITRS, 2) mean Earth/polar axis system, 3) IAU2000 Mars body fixed, respectively), but the system is apparent once the frame has been identified.
  • A secondary issue is that obviously a third coordinate may need to be specified, i.e. some sort of "radius" (from the body center of mass) or "elevation" about a reference surface. If the latter, then that reference surface needs to be specified as well (e.g. Mars, "IAU2000", "IAU2000 sphere").
  • If the microformat(s) were expandable to handle these cases when necessary (and others we haven't yet thought of) then obviously they could have a lot of utility.
  • There are plenty of GIS and standards organization formats out there for handling this type of data, even for the solar system case. I'm not at all an expert on what's available, but obviously for something like the microformats to be generally used, their advantages over these existing formats would have to be made clear.
  • As to usage here, we'll let others know of the existence of these formats, but I can't say how much immediate interest there might be in using them. We already (and Trent could say more) use a wide range of GIS and even flat file formats to carry e.g. lists of point-like data.
  • Regarding one other point on the web pages, I believe the "Moon" (capitalized) is the primary recognized name for the Moon. There is an [IAU nomenclature working group http://planetarynames.wr.usgs.gov/] that handles not only the names of features on planetary bodies, but of the bodies themselves, and I believe this is their position on this (since confirmed - Andy Mabbett).
Brent A. Archinal, Geodesist, Astrogeology Team, U.S. Geological Survey

Other

  • ???

Related pages

See also

NASA shares space with Google (2006-12-20)