Data Center Description
The World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS) maintains the collection of information on ongoing glacier changes, when the two former ICSI services PSFG (Permanent Service on Fluctuations of Glaciers) and TTS / WGI (Temporal Technical Secretary / World Glacier Inventory) were combined.
As a contribution to the Global Environment Monitoring System (GEMS / GTOS) of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and to the International Hydrological Programme (IHP) of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), the WGMS of the International Commission on Snow and Ice (ICSI / IAHS) and the Federation of Astronomical and Geophysical Data Analysis Services (FAGS / ICSU) today collects and publishes worldwide standardized glacier data. At present, the WGMS gets important financial and logistic support from the University of Zurich and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich.
The tasks of the WGMS are to continuously upgrade, collect and periodically publish glacier inventory and fluctuation data as well as to include satellite observations of remote glaciers and to assess ongoing changes. The WGMS database stores two types of data:
1. The World Glacier Inventory (WGI) contains glacier data describing the spatial distribution.
2. The Fluctuations of Glaciers (FoG) and Mass Balance Bulletin (MBB) contains data documenting changes in time (changes in mass, volume, area and length of glaciers). These data are stored at the ETH on the database system 'Oracle', which allows fast and selective data access.