Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 03 Issue 01

View Issue TOC
Volume 03, No. 1
Pages 23 - 29


Volumetric Visualization: An Effective Use of GIS Technology in the Field of Oceanography

T.O. ManleyJames A. Tallet
First Paragraph

The information explosion that has swept the scientific community has created tremendous opportunities for expanding our understanding of the world. Vast amounts of available data offer new challenges for oceanographers, not only in discerning the complex relationships before them, but, just as importantly, in finding ways of conveying this newfound knowledge to colleagues and to the public. Much of this data, including ocean-bottom bathymetry or data obtained via satellite imagery, can be represented through the use of two- or pseudo three-dimensional imagery. An even greater amount of information, however, does not lend itself to such graphic display and standard interpretation practices. These data sets represent complex three- and four-dimensional information obtained from computer models, advanced data gathering techniques and the synthesis of historical data bases. Fortunately, the technological advances that have produced this information avalanche have also produced new tools for managing and understanding this data. Specifically, Geographic Information System (GIS) applications that handle full three-dimensional property modeling, volumetric visualization, and quantitative analysis, such as Interactive Volume Modeling (IVM), are well suited for the interpretation of such complex data sets.


Manley, T.O., and J.A. Tallet. 1990. Volumetric visualization: An effective use of GIS technology in the field of oceanography. Oceanography 3(1):23–29, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.1990.17.

Copyright & Usage

This is an open access article made available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format as long as users cite the materials appropriately, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate the changes that were made to the original content. Images, animations, videos, or other third-party material used in articles are included in the Creative Commons license unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If the material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission directly from the license holder to reproduce the material.