offers access to a new hierarchical data structure that allows the
efficient storage of natural and man-made feature data for use in a
multitude of both manual and computerized Mapping, Charting & Geodesy
This classification schema is an object oriented classification
system. The feature and attribute objects defined in this taxonomy
are the logical intersection of many earlier, more traditional feature
classification systems. This scheme is based on visible man-made and
natural features (tangible features) and a wide assortment of intangible
objects that are encountered in geographic information system (GIS)
databases. Also, a unique part of this classification schema is the
existence of an integrated feature-object/3D-model
relationship. An integral part of the system is a set of 3D
models, in standard OpenFlightTM format, where each feature
object is associated with an appropriate 3D model. In this way, in a
real-time simulation system, each feature record contains a pointer to an
appropriate 3D model.
Our research draws from conceptual prototyping efforts performed
under the U.S. Air Forceís Special Operations Force Aircrew Training and
Rehearsal System (SOF ATARS) program where the conceptual design for the
classification system originated(Bitters 2002). This concept was
designed with the express intent of allowing the use of a wide array of non-standard
spatial feature data. This research supports the formal development
of the classification schema, its associated 3D model libraries, and
validation of the utility and applicability of the schema. In the final
phase of the effort, the resulting data sets will be integrated into three
commercial software systems:
1. An object model for ArcGISTM ( http://www.esri.com/ ),
2. A data structure for use in Terrain Expertís TerraVistaTM (http://www.terrex.com/ ).
3. A data structure for use in Multigen-Paradigmís Creator Terrain Studio/Sitebuilder3DTM suite of software (http://www.multigen.com/ ).
4. We also plan to provide updates to the existing SEDRIS's (http://www.sedris.org) Environmental Data
Coding Specification (EDCS) (ISO/IEC 18025) with additional feature concepts.
We would like to thank the National
Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) under their NGA University Research
Initiative (NURI) program, whose funding has made our research possible.