ISPRS Annals of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume X-2-2024
10 Jun 2024
 | 10 Jun 2024

Under and Through Water Datasets for Geospatial Studies: the 2023 ISPRS Scientific Initiative “NAUTILUS”

Alessio Calantropio, Fabio Menna, Dimitrios Skarlatos, Caterina Balletti, Gottfried Mandlburger, Panagiotis Agrafiotis, Filiberto Chiabrando, Andrea Maria Lingua, Alessia Giaquinto, and Erica Nocerino

Keywords: ISPRS Scientific Initiative, Underwater data collection and processing, Benchmark dataset, WebGIS, Data sharing, Dataset accessibility

Abstract. Benchmark datasets have become increasingly widespread in the scientific community as a method of comparison, validation, and improvement of theories and techniques thanks to more affordable means for sharing. While this especially holds for test sites and data collected above the water, publicly accessible benchmark activities for geospatial analyses in the underwater environment are not very common. Applying geomatic techniques underwater is challenging and expensive, especially when dealing with deep water and offshore operations. Moreover, benchmarking requires ground truth data for which, in water, several open issues exist concerning geometry and radiometry. Recognizing this scientific and technological challenge, the NAUTILUS (uNder And throUgh waTer datasets for geospatIaL stUdieS) project aims to create guidelines for new multi-sensor/cross-modality benchmark datasets. The project focuses on (i) surveying the actual needs and gaps in through and under-the-water geospatial applications through a questionnaire and interviews, (ii) launching a unique publicly available database collecting already existing datasets scattered across the web and literature, (iii) designing and identifying proper test site(s) and methodologies to deliver to the extended underwater community a brand-new multi-sensor/cross-modality benchmark dataset. The project outputs are available to researchers and practitioners in underwater measurements-related domains, as they can now access a comprehensive tool providing a synthesis of open questions and data already available. In doing so, past research efforts to collect and publish datasets have received additional credit and visibility.