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International Bathymetric Chart of the Southern Ocean (IBCSO)

IBCSO v2 webThe International Bathymetric Chart of the Southern Ocean (IBCSO) Project aims to produce the authoritative seafloor map for the Southern Ocean and South Pacific, South Atlantic and South Indian Ocean south of 50°S. As regional mapping project of the General Bathymetric Chart of the Oceans (GEBCO) and the Nippon Foundation – GEBCO Seabed 2030 Project (Seabed 2030), IBCSO has the ambitious goal to map the seafloor south of 50°S by 2030 entirely.

In June 2022, the second version of IBCSO (IBCSO v2) was published by Dorschel et al. in Scientific Data revealing the seafloor in this area in so-far unprecedented detail. It is by far the most comprehensive compilation of bathymetric data for the area. As the largest repository of bathymetry data from the Southern Ocean, IBCSO v2 is also the definitive source for scientists, cartographers, and others looking for a map of the seafloor. You can find IBCSO v2 DBMs in GEO-TIFF and NetCDF format as geographic data and in IBCSO-projection as well as an RGB grid and a digital chart for unrestricted download at https://doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.937574. The DBMs have a resolution of 500 m × 500 m, stretch from 50°S to the South Pole, and are available as ice-surface topography and sub-ice topography. For more information, please also see Dorschel et al. (2023).

Within SCAR, IBCSO is an Expert Group under the GeoSciences Group. It is hosted by the Alfred-Wegener-Institut Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung in Bremerhaven, Germany and part of GEBCO and the Nippon Foundation – GEBCO Seabed 2030. It however represents a truly global effort with support and data contributions from institutes, institutions, companies, and individuals from all over the world that share the common interest in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.

In order to make the vision of IBCSO and Seabed 2030 of a fully mapped ocean a reality, we would like to encourage everybody who has bathymetric data to share these data with the IBCSO project. If you feel that you can contribute, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We will continuously work to make IBCSO v3 an even more amazing map.

Dorschel B., Hehemann L., Viquerat S., Warnke F., Dreutter S., Schulze Tenberge Y., Accettella D., An L., Barrios F., Bazhenova E., Black J., Bohoyo F., Davey C., De Santis L., Escutia Dotti C., Fremand A.C., Fretwell P.T., Gales J.A., Gao J., Gasperini L., Greenbaum J.S., Jencks J.H., Hogan K., Hong J.K., Jakobsson M., Jensen L., Kool J., Larin S., Larter R.D., Leitchenkov G., Loubrieu B., Mackay K., Mayer L., Millan R., Morlighem M., Navidad F., Nitsche F.O., Nogi Y., Pertuisot C., Post A.L., Pritchard H.D., Purser A., Rebesco M., Rignot E., Roberts J.L., Rovere M., Ryzhov I., Sauli C., Schmitt T., Silvano A., Smith J., Snaith H., Tate A.J., Tinto K.J., Vandenbossche P., Weatherall P., Wintersteller P., Yang C., Zhang T., Arndt J.E., 2022. The International Bathymetric Chart of the Southern Ocean Version 2. Scientific Data 9, 275, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-022-01366-7.


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The objective of the International Bathymetric Chart of the Southern Ocean is to gain better knowledge of the sea floor topography in the Southern Ocean. For that reason the Southern Ocean Regional Center collects and compiles bathymetric data from hydrographic offices, scientific institutions and data centers to create the first regional digital bathymetric model that covers all circum-Antarctic waters.