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BSHC Chart Datum Working Group

"To implement a common reference level in the Baltic Sea"


Photo: Chart Datum Working Group 11th meeting, 5-6 February 2019, Aalborg, Denmark

The Baltic Sea Chart Datum 2000 (BSCD2000)

The Baltic Sea Chart Datum 2000 (BSCD2000) is a geodetic reference system adopted for Baltic Sea hydrographic surveying, hydrographic engineering, nautical charts and publications. It is based on the definitions for the European Vertical Reference System (EVRS). The height reference surface of BSCD2000 is the equipotential surface of the Earth’s gravity field. The zero level of BSCD2000 is in accordance with the Normaal Amsterdams Peil (NAP). The reference epoch for height and depth changes due to the postglacial land uplift in Fennoscandia is 2000.0. Mean sea level in BSCD2000 currently varies from a few cm at the entrance to maximally approximately 25 cm in the middle of the Baltic Sea.

BSCD2000 is about to be adopted as unified chart datum by all the countries around the Baltic Sea and also agrees with the national height systems used on land. BSCD2000 will facilitate effective use of GNSS methods like GPS, GLONASS and Galileo for accurate navigation and hydrographic surveying in the future. A more detailed specification of the BSCD2000 can be found here.

The Working Group should

  1. To continue implementation of the Baltic Sea Chart Datum 2000 (EVRS with land-uplift epoch 2000).
  2. To prepare the road map for transition, including e.g:
    • to establish a network of relevant bodies involved into the transition and efficiently communicate and give guidance within this network
    • to invite relevant bodies to inform the users
    • to review of progress of national plans and actions -to propose harmonization actions.
  3. To cooperate with relevant bodies on water level related issues e.g:
    • to promote studies on the validation, status and distribution of water level information, and to promote studies on interpolation and prediction of water levels
    • to promote studies on displaying schemes for joint Baltic Sea water level information
    • to promote studies on recommendations to IHO bodies how the sea level and its variations should be shown on nautical paper and ENC charts and publications, and conveying water level information to mariners [ref. IHO Technical Resolutions].
  4. To further development of a common harmonized height reference, including further development of a common geoid model for the whole Baltic Sea area and supporting geoid and oceanographic studies relevant to these purposes.
  5. To cooperate with relevant international bodies, for example organizations responsible for delivering water level information (e.g. BOOS and NOOS) and geodetic infrastructure (e.g. EUREF and NKG).
  6. To liaise with relevant IHO bodies and study relevant IHO resolutions and specifications.

The Working Group should report to the BSHC Conferences.



CDWG 12th meeting, 3-4 March 2020, Gdansk, Poland

BSHC 24th meeting, 10-12 September 2019, Gdansk, Poland

BOOS Annual meeting, 11-13 June 2019, Rostock, Germany

NKG meeting, 11-13 March 2019, Lyngby, Denmark

CDWG 11th meeting, 5-6 February 2019, Aalborg, Denmark

BSHC 23rd meeting, 27-29 August 2018, Aalborg, Denmark

CDWG 10th meeting, 7-8 February 2018, Arkö, Sweden

CDWG 9th meeting, 4-5 April 2017, Rostock, Germany

CDWG 8th meeting, 23-24 February 2016, Helsinki, Finland


Information about Baltic Sea Chart Datum 2000

Implementation status Baltic Sea Chart Datum 2000 (Questionnaire 2019)

BOOS products related to CDWG actions

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