The GMRT-AusSeabed project aims to address the cost associated with processing, merging and reformatting of bathymetric data in marine modelling and management by adopting and expanding the Global Multi-Resolution Topography Synthesis (GMRT) and becoming a local platform node focused on Australia’s region of marine responsibility. The GMRT is operated by Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory and funded by the US National Science Foundation.

The GMRT-AusSeabed platform will provide seamless, high-quality elevation and bathymetry data to the consistent standards required for oceanographic models and predictions, accelerating research by reducing manual effort, avoiding duplication and removing the barrier of specialised skills needed for accurate bathymetry data. The outputs, suitable for high-performance computing or desktop environments, ensure the service is scalable and accessible to the wider research community while the consistency, resolution, and processing capability delivered by this platform improve the accuracy, validity and reliability of modelling.

GMRT-AusSeabed will integrate with the AusSeabed Data Hub, a cloud-hosted federated platform for open seabed mapping data. This integration will leverage off an already established platform to amplify the benefits to Australian marine science and the broader community.

Start date 22 February 2021
Expected completion date 31 May 2022
Investment by ARDC $373,931
Lead node
1 Baseline bathymetry data collection
Deakin University, James Cook University and CSIRO will collate, process and publish a range of bathymetry datasets from various sources and with different horizontal resolutions (e.g. multibeam sonar, bathymetric LIDAR, single-beam sonar and 3D seismic data), and in doing so will contribute to establishing best-practices for collating bathymetry data.
2 User needs analysis
The ocean and coastal modelling community from universities, public and private sectors will be engaged through a series of surveys and workshops led by the Bureau of Meteorology and Geoscience Australia, to ensure the solutions are fit-for-purpose.
3 Global Multi-Resolution Topography (GMRT) synthesis platform
Geoscience Australia and Lamont Doherty Earth Observation (LDEO) will adopt and enhance the GMRT synthesis platform, which enables users to generate custom maps and grids from a compilation dataset, and run hydrodynamic models in high performance computing environments (AWS/NCI).
4 Training of the end-user community
Training materials will be created for the end-user community and a webinar delivered.

Core features

National Data Asset
The development of seamless, high-quality elevation and bathymetry data to the consistent standards required for oceanographic models and predictions
High-performance compute
The capacity to create user-specified high-quality, custom-resolution, integrated elevation and bathymetry grids that are fit for purpose.
Environmental Management
Accurate and reliable modelling will benefit coastal communities nationally by informing environmental and fisheries management, and risk mitigation

Who is this project for?

  • Fisheries management
  • Environmental and conservation management
  • Researchers, incl. ocean and coastal modelers
  • Local councils
  • Emergency management
  • State government
  • Coastal planning sector
  • Resource (alternative or conventional) industry
  • Marine surveying sector
  • Recreational ocean stakeholders (e.g. fishermen)

What does this project enable?

This project will enable a nationally consistent and best-practice approach for synthesising various datasets into a seamless coastal and marine elevation framework, with the capacity to create user-specified high-quality, custom-resolution, integrated elevation and bathymetry grids that are fit for purpose.

Handy resources

Geoscience AustraliaVisit
Bureau of MeteorologyVisit
Deakin UniversityVisit
James Cook UniversityVisit
Lamont-Doherty Earth ObservatoryVisit
CSIROVisit
Australian Antarctic DivisionVisit