Tag Archives: GIS

Something GISSY – Geospatial vector file extensions

We all LOVE GIS data. “Everything happens somewhere”. But what happens when you get some really cool “data” for your project, eg. Roads.gpx? What is a .gpx file? The following is a quick 101 summary of some common vector file formats.

Shapefile (ESRI)

A shapefile actually consists of several files.

Mandatory

  • .shp file containing the feature geometries
  • .dbf file containing the attributes in dBase format
  • .shx index file.

Optional

  • .prj which contains the projection information
  • .xml is the associated metadata.
  • .sbn is the spatial index for optimizing queries.
  • .sbx optimises loading times.

If you ever receive a .shp only you will need to request that all three  files are sent in order to use the data. Recommended that the .prj is also mandatory.

.tab file (MapInfo)

MapInfo .tab files are a proprietary format for MapInfo software. Similar to shapefiles, they require a set of files to represent geographic information and attributes.

  • .dat files contain the tabular data associated as a dBase .dbf file
  • .id files are index files that link graphical objects to database information
  • .map files are the map objects that store geographic information
  • .ind files are index files for the tabular data.

Back to our “Roads.gpx”… which is a .gps Exchange format.

See https://gisgeography.com/gis-formats/  other common vector types.

If all else fails, a Google search can usually uncover some less common formats.

Mipela assist Luminous Energy in planning solar farms in Queensland

Farming in Australia is in a state of turmoil. Many farmers are saddled with unsustainably high debts and are hit by unstable crop prices. Extreme weather events, from mass flooding in 2011 to intolerable droughts in 2014, exacerbate the difficulties faced by Australian farmers. By diversifying into solar generation, farmers can regulate their annual income and secure their finances.

Luminous Energy specialises in the planning and development of large-scale photovoltaic power plants, from initial site selection to connection and commissioning. They organise the development of solar farms, taking projects from initial site selection up to the point at which they are ready to be built.

Luminous recently sought assistance from Mipela with data management and mapping support to produce plans suitable for property agreements and site constraint mapping for three proposed solar farm sites in Queensland.

As part of the planning and development process, Luminous are required to submit site development plans to local council and plans to accompany ecological assessments to State and Federal Government. With the decision makers being geographically spread between Australia and the UK rapid revisions of mapping was required. Having someone experienced on the ground who can interpret requirements and turn the work around in a timely manner like Mipela has been critical to the project so far. This well managed revision process has resulted in better project delivery with quickly delivered result in an effective manner.

Mipela continues its GIS support on the Papua LNG Project

In 2015 Mipela provided ongoing GIS support to ERIAS Group during phase 1 of the Elk-Antelope LNG field (PRL-15) development (Social and Environmental Screening Studies). This task was as part of the feasibility study for the Papua LNG Project.

The Papua LNG Project is one of the few greenfield LNG projects worldwide.

ERIAS Group successfully bid to undertake phase 2 – Environmental Impact Study and Environmental, Social, Health Impact Assessment studies for Total, operator of the Papua LNG Project. These studies will allow Total to secure an Environmental Permit for the Project under the Environment Act 2000. The Mipela GeoSolutions GIS team have been engaged for the past twelve months supporting ERIAS Group mapping and spatial data for phase 2.

The following Milestones have been achieved during this period:

  • 465 maps produced\revised
  • 990 data transactions

Key Project Infrastructure components

  • LNG plant to be located at Caution Bay, approximately 20km north-west of Port Moresby and adjacent to the Exxon-Mobil PNG LNG Project site
  • An upstream central processing facility, to be located west of the Herd Base in PRL 15, close to the Purari River
  • Pipelines – approximately 75km onshore and 265km offshore pipeline, plus a separate gas and condensate pipeline yet to be determined.

More than just maps… How do we add value to your GIS?

At Mipela GeoSolutions our team uses a variety of systems and procedures to maximise your GIS productivity. It is not just about the maps. It is about efficiently integrating or massaging the data you have into information products and solutions. These products inform decision making in your organisation.

Mipela have built systems and workflows around GIS Work Request systems, Data Management logs, QC Checklists, Job Tracking, Issue logs. These systems are integrated into our GIS Project Management adding value to your project by ensuring knowledge retention, Continuous Learning, Quality Control and Continuity Assurance.

Value

Value is not just Cost and Time. What is your expectation about the Quality and Service you receive? Service is supported by Communication, which is fundamental to our Project Management system. Regular reporting, emails, phone conversations and meetings are all logged for the benefit of the entire team, not just the parties involved. Our Team approach means we work with you to achieve required outcomes.

The quality of the service we offer is managed by our QC System and peer review process. Our GIS team have degrees in Surveying, Engineering, Mathematics and the Spatial Sciences. This diverse qualification pool brings together different skill sets that are applied to problem solving and crafting your solution. The team is constantly looking to automate and optimise repetitive tasks. This results in faster, more consistent solutions.

Versatility

Our team GIS Specialists are competent in the major Industry Desktop products as well as open-source tools. We are able to provide on site GIS support, but can also work remotely if required.

Our systems are under constant review. All lessons learned are fed back to improve the process and solutions we deliver.

Continuous Learning and Feedback

Feedback and learning from experience are a crucial aspect of the GIS Services team. Using X-info Connect, issues and solutions are captured on the job.

This information is distributed via logs and reports to internal and external teams. Each piece of information is tracked from inception to resolution, including technical solutions and constraints.

Information distribution promotes the knowledge base of the team ensuring growth and development, whilst maximising knowledge retention and technical continuity assurance for our clients.

Field Data Conversation Efficiency

Murray & Associates (Qld) Pty Ltd is a team of professional Land and Engineering Surveyors and Town Planners. They demonstrate integrity and professional commitment to Queensland service provision and were established in 1946.

Working on the Origin Gas Pipeline Project, Murray were collecting data in the field but needed to transfer that data in accordance with the Origin Field Data Collection Dictionary. After consulting with Mipela GeoSolutions, a three stage approach was agreed to conduct a Feasibility Study, Develop a Model then Operationalising that Model. The model processed the source shapefiles and converted them into feature classes in a file geodatabase as provided by Origin.

The feature mapping file defined which shapefiles were to be transferred to the corresponding feature classes. It was configured for one to one mapping, many to one mapping, or one to many mapping. In addition to the feature mapping file, there was an attribute mapping file for every shapefile/feature class relationship.

Murray & Associates director, Andrew Campbell said, “Murray & Associates has been really happy with the communication and clear strategy presented by Mipela from the outset of this project. Mipela are a very professional company and we look forward to working with Mipela in the future.”

In a nutshell, Murray’s were satisfied because their business process was enhanced and they were able to turnaround work for their clients quickly. Their client, Origin was also satisfied, for getting their data sooner and in a suitable format.

For more information, please contact Dirk Craigie.

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