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A global, self-consistent, hierarchical, high-resolution shoreline database
Wessel, P.; Smith, W.H.F. (1996). A global, self-consistent, hierarchical, high-resolution shoreline database. J. Geophys. Res. 101(B4): 8741-8743. hdl.handle.net/10.1029/96JB00104
In: Journal of Geophysical Research. American Geophysical Union: Richmond. ISSN 0148-0227, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Keywords
    Coastlines; Databases; Geographical information systems; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Wessel, P.
  • Smith, W.H.F.

Abstract
    We present a high-resolution shoreline data set amalgamated from two databases in the public domain. The data have undergone extensive processing and are free of internal inconsistencies such as erratic points and crossing segments. The shorelines are constructed entirely from hierarchically arranged closed polygons. The data can be used to simplify data searches and data selections or to study the statistical characteristics of shorelines and landmasses. The data set can be accessed both electronically over Internet and from the National Geophysical Data Center, Boulder, Colorado; it comes with access software and routines to facilitate decimation based on a standard line-reduction algorithm.

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