Improving Groundwater Data Interoperability: Results of the Second OGC Groundwater Interoperability Experiment

Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Nate Booth, USGS Headquarters, Reston, VA, United States and Jessica Marie Lucido, U.S. Geological Survey Center for Integrated Data Analytics, Middleton, WI, United States
Interoperable sharing of groundwater data across international boarders is essential for the proper management of global water resources. However storage and management of groundwater data is often times distributed across many agencies or organizations. Furthermore these data may be represented in disparate proprietary formats, posing a significant challenge for integration. For this reason standard data models are required to achieve interoperability across geographical and political boundaries.

The GroundWater Markup Language 1.0 (GWML1) was developed in 2010 as an extension of the Geography Markup Language (GML) in order to support groundwater data exchange within Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDI). In 2013, development of GWML2 was initiated under the sponsorship of the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) for intended adoption by the international community as the authoritative standard for the transfer of groundwater feature data, including data about water wells, aquifers, and related entities. GWML2 harmonizes GWML1 and the EU's INSPIRE models related to geology and hydrogeology. Additionally, an interoperability experiment was initiated to test the model for commercial, technical, scientific, and policy use cases.

The scientific use case focuses on the delivery of data required for input into computational flow modeling software used to determine the flow of groundwater within a particular aquifer system. It involves the delivery of properties associated with hydrogeologic units, observations related to those units, and information about the related aquifers. To test this use case web services are being implemented using GWML2 and WaterML2, which is the authoritative standard for water time series observations, in order to serve USGS water well and hydrogeologic data via standard OGC protocols. Furthermore, integration of these data into a computational groundwater flow model will be tested. This submission will present the GWML2 information model and results of an interoperability experiment with a particular emphasis on the scientific use case.