The main objective of BigDataOcean (BDO) is to enable maritime big data scenarios for EU-based companies, organisations and scientists, through a multi-segment platform that will combine data of different velocity, variety and volume under an interlinked, trusted, multilingual engine to produce a big-data repository of value and veracity back to the participants and local communities.

The project aims to capitalise on existing modern technological breakthroughs in the areas of the big data driven economy, and roll out a completely new value chain of interrelated data streams coming from diverse sectors and languages and residing on cross technology innovations being delivered in different formats (as well in different states, e.g. structured/unstructured, real-time/batches) in order to revolutionise the way maritime-related industries work, showcasing a huge and realistic economic, societal and environmental impact that is being achieved by introducing an economy of knowledge into a traditional sector which does not operate in an orchestrated manner and is rather fragmented.

This infrastructure is combined with four strong pilots that bring into BDO a huge amount of data (in TBs) in order to develop the largest maritime database as a resource of collaborative, data-driven intelligence. BDO gives participants the capability to upload both private and public resources of data and interrelate them over public and private queries and diagrams.

The project aims to deliver the biggest self-sustained maritime Big Data platform that will make Big Data technologies accessible to maritime stakeholders. BDO targets the whole spectrum of the maritime business sector; from shipping industry stakeholders such as ship owners, ship suppliers, charterers, freight forwarders and port authorities to stakeholders with a broader scope and focus linked to the marine ecosystem, such as oceanographic institutes, energy companies and entrepreneurs, NGOs and environmental companies.

BDO consortium consists of 10 partners including industrial partners, research institutes and technology providers and integrators.  The consortium partners believe to have succeeded in building a multidisciplinary consortium in which the resources, skills and knowledge necessary for the realisation of the objectives of this collaborative innovation project are well represented. BDO partners: NTUA (coordinator), UBITECH, EXMILE, ANEK, Foinikas, ISMB, HCMR, R&D Nester, Universitat Bonn, UNINOVA.


The main outputs of the project are novel services and applications that allow maritime-related industries, organisations and stakeholders, in general, to generate more (a) factual and evidence-based analytics, (b) decision support models, and (c) new business services focused on real-time collaboration, knowledge sharing amongst the key stakeholders, based on both (i) real-time data streams taking into consideration the data and temporal granularity aspects, and (ii) on batch processed data to extract analytics and intelligence to influence strategic mid-term and long-term operations planning. BDO aims to constitute the central node of a dynamic and expanding network.

The data services offered by BDO are envisioned to constitute the main building block that organisations (or coalitions of organisations) will exploit in order both to contribute their own data (further enriching the plethora of “raw materials”) and to consume value-added services that will innovate their everyday way of operation. Thus, the project will be a constantly growing pool of cross-sectorial and multi-lingual linked data, offering services to and bringing together organisations of different activity fields and needs.

The BigDataOcean platform offers simple and advanced search options for maritime data and services and allows end users to interlink and query datasets from various sources. For instance, querying water temperature, wave height and the (sea surface) significant height in the Mediterranean Sea during 2017 is just an example of a combination of data retrieved from different sources.

The BDO platform offers data analytics services and various visualisation options that will assist end-users to recognise patterns and discover insights not previously seen in data. It will also bring together multiple visualisations and enrich their presentation in the form of custom dashboards created by the users. Finally, the BDO will give the option to build services using the data and the analytics capabilities of the platform, or even have a forum-like utility in order to facilitate potential customers to request for new services.

BDO platform architecture is a setup with Apache SPARK and Apache Kafka. System’s stack is such, that offers seamless integration of interactive notebooks (e.g. Jyputer, Apache Zeppelin, etc.)  and smooth visualisations of interlinked big data points over maps. Platform’s data are semantically enriched following the BDO Canonical Model. Based on the project’s model, the system allows configurable Spatial Big Data visualisations with its Query Builder and SPARK, as well as configurable data analytics workflow using a series of Data Analysis processes (e.g. clustering, regression, decision trees and pre-process functions).