Introduction to Interoperability in Digital Twins of the Ocean

 Introduction to Interoperability in Digital Twins of the Ocean

Earlier this month, the EU-funded ILIAD Digital Twin of the Ocean project initiated a series of webinars and training sessions. These events cover topics ranging from technical to economics and policy. The aim of this activity is to support communication across different disciplines, ease the design process and improve engagement with ILIAD project partners.

The first webinar had the topic ‘Introduction to interoperability in digital twins of the ocean’ and was held online, last week.

Image credit: Freepik

Interoperability is a key factor in digital twins, where a wide variety of data sets, models and auxiliary data are combined. The webinar introduced interoperability from data collection to sharing of final products or applications. The ILIAD digital twin of the ocean was used as the main scenario, complemented with examples from GAIA-X and other industry data perspectives.

What do we mean by Interoperability?

Interoperability can be defined as ‘the ability of several systems or services to exchange information and use the exchanged information mutually’. This easy portability of data refers to easy data transfer, to increase the usefulness of this data as a strategic resource. Portability also implies that services can be migrated from one provider to another, while data migration can be handled without significant changes and adaptation while maintaining high quality.

Interoperability in the ILIAD Digital Twin of the Ocean

Piotr Zaborowski (OGC) presented a short overview of interoperability concepts used in the ILIAD project. A special focus was on alignment with GAIA-X standards and the implementation of these standards by the ILIAD project.

What is GAIA-X?

Gaia-X is a project initiated by Europe for Europe and beyond. Representatives from business, politics, and science from Europe and around the globe are working together, hand in hand, to create a federated and secure data infrastructure. Companies and citizens will collate and share data – in such a way that they keep control over them. They should decide what happens to their data, and where it is stored, and always retain data sovereignty.

The architecture of Gaia-X is based on the principle of decentralisation. Gaia-X is the result of a multitude of individual platforms that all follow a common standard – the Gaia-X standard. Together, we are developing a data infrastructure based on the values of openness, transparency, and trust. So, what emerges is not a cloud, but a networked system that links many cloud service providers together.

Interoperability in GAIA-X

Gaia-X aims to create a federated open data infrastructure based on European values regarding data and cloud sovereignty. The mission of Gaia-X is to design and implement a data-sharing architecture that consists of common standards for data sharing, best practices, tools, and governance mechanisms. It also constitutes an EU-anchored federation of cloud infrastructure and data services, to which all 27 EU member states have committed themselves. 

In the webinar, Hauke Ernst (GAIA-X Germany, COOPERANTS) introduced one of the GAIA-X projects from Germany and how this project implements interoperability in the project architecture. 

Discovering and Sharing Industry Data – an Interoperability Perspective

The Gaia-X Ecosystem includes a large variety of participants and service offerings. Therefore, interoperability needs to be ensured on different levels, by means of service composition. This covers concepts like Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as a Service (Saas), and data resources.

Matthew Whaley (HubOcean) introduced the interoperability perspective for industry data querying, discovery, and sharing.

Regarding the interoperability of data, core elements to be identified in this endeavour are API specifications and best practices for semantic data descriptions. The use of semantic data interoperability is seen as a foundation to eventually create a clear mapping between domain-specific approaches based on a community process and open-source efforts.

More Information about the Webinar

To download the webinar slides, please fill out the form on this page

To stay up to date with more upcoming ILIAD and Groundstation.Space events, check out these events pages:

About ILIAD – Digital Twin of the Ocean

ILIAD Digital Twin of the Ocean is an EU funded project that builds on two decades of investments in policies and infrastructures for the blue economy and aims at establishing an interoperable, data-intensive, and cost-effective Digital Twin of the Ocean.

Groundstation.Space is one of the ILIAD consortium partners.

Author: Katya Rutkovskaya. Edited: Remco Timmermans

Featured Image credit: Freepik

Katya Rutkovskaya

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