Mallon Technology Attend GeoScience 2014

Thu 6th Nov 2014

GeoScience Ireland 2014

Yesterday saw the hosting of the annual GeoScience event in Dublin Castle. Niall Kennedy and Shelley Coe were representing Mallon Technology at the event and below is an extract of their experiences on the day.

There was a good turn out for the event which showcased the work of the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), Universities and Commercial bodies over the past year. The main talking points of the presentation were the continuing work of INFOMAR, a project to map the seabed and more or Ireland's coastal waters. Another project being worked on was TELLUS, a cross-border initiative to collect geological data of several border counties in Ireland and Northern Ireland. They were also pleased to announce that they had recieved funding for iCRAG, which is the Irish Centre for Research in Applied Geosciences. This will result in a lot more detailed PhD level studies into geology in Ireland.

It was fascinating to observe how firmly entrenched GIS technologies have become within the GeoScience community, with digital directories, apps and online map viewers being used to make data more accessible to users. It was interesting to note, that there seems to be a shift from these projects investing the majority of funding in data acquisition to allotting some of their budget to developing ways to deliver their data to the users. One of the highlights of the day was seeing an example of this in a project funded by INFOMAR. An app was developed to promote diving in Irish waters. This app pulls together a number of different live datasets and gives the user information such as wreckage sites, water salinity and wave height. The real bonus of this app is that it allows non-technical users to benefit from these datasets.

GSI also showcased another ambitious project currently being undertaken. Work is already underway on the production of a 3D model of sediment data that has been gathered from boreholes and also a 3D model of the bedrock in Ireland. This is an important development as 3D mapping is often used for mining and petroleum exploration. This project is being carried out using GoCAD software.

Anothetr theme for the presentations was how the GSI and other bodies are trying to introduce Geographic and IT programs into second level education, particularly in transition years. Some of the initiatives included getting students to create their own maps of an area, e.g. a beach. and to recreate data such as litter on a mobile app. They are also trying to give some introduction into coding as well.

Overall, it was an interesting conference which showed the increased investment in the Geographical fields and that Irish studies are at the forefront of worldwide investigations and are developing a strong reputation in scientific approaches.