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News // Inogen Spotlight on Free Geographical Information System Software

Date // 9th April 2014

Inogen Spotlight on Free Geographical Information System Software

Inogen Associate, DGE Group (DGE) from Denmark has considerable experience in replacing commercial Geographical Information System Software; (GIS), with the free and open source tool called QGIS (www.qgis.org). In the past DGE used to make maps with commercial GIS and CAD products like MapInfo and AutoCAD. A review of company needs of creating maps through data collection, digitizing, analysis and visualization of spatial data led to the free and open source QGIS.

What is QGIS?

QGIS is a user-friendly Geographic Information System (GIS) licensed under the GNU General Public License. QGIS is an official project of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). It runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OSX, Windows and Android and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and a diverse list functionalities supporting both vector and raster GIS. DGE uses QGIS for mapping of contaminated areas, analysis of groundwater, visualizing spatial trends and analysis of elevation data. QGIS is very extendable with plugins and command line access of geo algorithms for batch runs of an array of files. 

A case study - DANFOSS

DGE has implemented QGIS as a geographical database solution for the Danish company DANFOSS operating worldwide. DANFOSS is a world leader in production of thermostatic valves and industrial automation. At DANFOSS the handling of chemical fluids and gases in pipes and tanks and measurement of VOC (volatile organic compound) is essential in the daily production. QGIS is used as a database tool visualizing the distribution of pipe network and chemical tanks on company compound. Since QGIS uses a database as backend data storage, data can be extracted from map or database or both. An example of a geographical query is to create a new map with all oil storage tanks above 5000 L, with a scheduled maintenance date set within the next 6 weeks. Another query is extraction of elevation data next to industrial outlets like chimneys for calculating the distribution of air pollution. 

A case study – DGE map making

Maps built in DGE Environmental Engineers usually wrap around a single contaminated parcel. Maps are produced before field work and are basically a site map, a building map and an aerial photography. Upon commencement of field work additional maps of drilled wells, photos, land use, chemical tanks and results of chemical analyses are added to the map layout. Maps can be published to the internet if needed. Other maps used are elevation data for visibility analysis, for example, how far is a wind turbine visible in a line of sight. 

QGIS courses

Inogen via its Associates can offer QGIS courses that extend from the novice GIS user to the advanced GIS user handling subjects like digitizing, height analysis, and interpolation of chemical data to 2D grids, print setup and Python software development.

For further information on QGIS Courses please contact Jakob Lanstorp, Tel.: +45 4020 7529, E: jal@dge.dk

Allan Tougaard Christensen
DGE Group
atc@dge.dk

 
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