In the “Digital Earth” joint project, financed by the Helmholtz Initiative and Networking Fund, new methods are developed to merge and more efficiently use large quantities of highly varying data from atmospheric, oceanic and terrestrial research. The Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht thereby cooperates with eight research centres within the Helmholtz Association. The project is coordinated by the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel. The Digital Earth joint project is directly linked to the collaborative projects MOSES and ESM – Earth System Modelling
To better integrate comprehensive existing data sets, data is compiled from different areas in the field of earth sciences and is analysed across disciplines. Through close cooperation between natural scientists and data scientists, digital workflows are to become more refined, new processes are to be created and yet to be developed algorithms are to be integrated into the analysis. The aim is to process rapidly growing, multi-parameter data sets, explore them visually and investigate them using artificial intelligence.
Two examples are to be used to test the modern methods of data analysis and interdisciplinary, close cooperation. On the one hand, the researchers study floods and their effects, while on the other, they are working on obtaining an overview of the methane sources in the German Bight.
Scientists at the Institute of Coastal Research contribute to both areas: for the flood case study, they combine data from diverse sources such as FerryBoxes and modelling data. This is to gain a more comprehensive view of the extent and effects of pollutants and nutrients that are washed into the North Sea during an Elbe flood.
For the methane case study, the coastal researchers work with the help of chemical transport models and data from measurement campaigns to identify human-induced and natural sources of the greenhouse gas methane in the German Bight and to better understand their interactions with the atmosphere.
The research in Digital Earth, which transcends compartmental boundaries and disciplines, will contribute to solving pressing societal issues such as climate change, resource security or natural disasters/geohazards.
Further Information and Contacts at the Institute of Coastal Research
Digital Earth Website