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Korea Institute of Ocean Science & Technology

KIOST launches big data platform on tidal flats

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  • Date : 2021-12-29
Figure 1. Color-coded topographic map of tidal flats on the southernmost end of Donggeomdo Island, Ganghwa, using satellite data.png 바로보기 Figure 2. Object-based classification of sedimentary facies on the coasts of Hwangdo Island, Taean, Chungcheongnam-do, using satellite images and on-site investigative data .png 바로보기

The Korea Institute of Ocean Science and Technology (KIOST) (President, Kim Woong-seo) announced that Korea’s first big data platform on tidal flats had been built, making information on the nation’s tidal flats available to the public. The KIOST plans to upload data on the tidal flats of Hangang River and Nakdonggang River through the end of this year, and next year plans to add data on the western and southern coasts, covering all the tidal flats in Korea. The project is being conducted as part of the larger “Big Data Platform and Center Construction Project ,” operated by the National Information Society Agency.


Korea’s tidal flats were officially listed as a UNESCO World Heritage in July 2021 in recognition of the flats’ ecological and economic value as a basis of the livelihood of fishermen, habitats for animals and plants, and as stopover sites for migratory birds. Recently, the tidal flats have also been recognized for their carbon storage (in the form of blue carbon) and are expected to contribute to Korea’s transition towards carbon neutrality.


Despite the importance of the tidal flats, prior to the establishment of the new data base, information on the tidal flats had been spread across multiple institutions, making it difficult to effectively utilize the information. The KIOST’s provision of tidal flat information through its integrated platform is expected to greatly increase the efficient access, analysis, use, and distribution of the information. Through the platform, the KIOST plans to offer 20 kinds of data, including: high-resolution satellite and unmanned aerial vehicle images of the tidal flats; information on sedimentary deposits, including the size of the deposit particles; a tidal current map; and a forest vegetation map.


These types of data on tidal flats can be used for daily life, research, and policymaking. The information on sediments and other types of deposits can be used to: prevent accidents that happen every year; detect changes in the sediments of estuary tidal flats that are directly impacted by the opening of estuary banks; analyze changes in the fisheries ecosystem; and guide policies for the preservation of the tidal flats. Big data on Korea’s tidal flats is available through the big data platform website (


KISO President Kim said, “We need correct information on tidal flats in order to ensure their sustainable preservation and management. We at the KIOST will lead the management of the tidal flat information platform and keep the information up-to-date through regular monitoring and prompt updates.”



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Last Update : 2022-06-14