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Data Management and Information Systems

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The BAW requires appropriate base data for dealing with hydraulic-engineering issues. The most important data includes cartographic, topographic, morphological and hydrological data. This data, which is frequently very voluminous, is supplied to the BAW by the local Waterways and Shipping Offices (WSA). Further necessary data is acquired by the BAW itself or by third parties on behalf of the BAW. In future, all data will be stored on a geo-data server to enable standardised research. At present the data is stored in various databases (e.g. water level database, structures database, database for measurements of velocity at cross section profiles, database for calibration runs with inland navigation vessels).

So that the data fulfils the requirements for research, central storage and backup, it is described by the BAW by means of metadata. Metadata supplies basic information about a document, such as author, origin, title, description of the data and information on the quality or storage location of the data. Thus data can be found and used more efficiently. As not all file formats permit the addition of descriptive data, a metadata schema will be produced for the data of the Department of Hydraulic Engineering in Inland Areas.

Furthermore the use of a commercial geographic information system will be supported so that the cartographic background information can be processed and made available to the employees on centralised systems.


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