From Semantic Sensor Network Incubator Group
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Kno.e.sis Center: Cory Henson, Amit Sheth

Project: Semantic Sensor Web

Project Description: Semantic Sensor Web (SSW) project aims to provide semantic annotation of sensor data and services in order to better manage situation awareness. In particular, we present an approach to annotating sensor data with spatial, temporal, and thematic semantic metadata. This technique builds on current standardization efforts within the W3C and Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) and extends them with semantic Web technologies to provide enhanced descriptions and access to sensor data. To date, we have developed an ontology based on the OGC-SWE Observations and Measurements language and implemented a semantic sensor observation service that is conformant to the OGC-SWE Sensor Observation Service specification.

Relevance to SSN-XG: The SSW project is relevant to SSN-XG in several ways. We have experience developing an ontology from the OGC-SWE lanugages, which also seems like a suitable starting point for SSN-XG. Also, we have implemented a semantic SOS service using this ontology that requires conversion of SWE XML documents to RDF, which may also be beneficial when mapping from the sensor ontology to SensorML.

CSIRO: Kerry Taylor, Holger Neuhaus, Michael Compton, Laurent Lefort and formerly Amit Parashar

Two projects (see also this overview)

Project: Data Services for Sensor Networks

Project Description: Part of a larger sensor networks project (which ranges from the design and construction of sensors and nodes, to energy harvesting, to communications and radio, to data, querying and interoperability) the Data Services for Sensor Networks project aims to create tools for all aspects of network, data and query management. We use semantics and ontologies to describe sensors, sensor networks and other data sources and services; the tool chain will then take queries, input using ontologies describing the domain, reason about and transform them as necessary and then orchestrate their execution on the network, or as a combination of network and other sources.

Relevance to SSN-XG: This project is relevant to the SSN-XG because we use specifications of sensors and networks to reason about, plan and execute queries and other sensor network operations. We have experience in semantic data integration, workflows and other semantic planning and optimisation tasks.

Project: Hydrological Sensor Webs

Project Description: The Tasmanian Hydrological Sensor Web project will develop new methods for semantic sensor data integration in the hydrology domain. We will integrate rainfall, climate, and stream flow data collected by in-situ sensors with numerical models that produce daily quantitative precipitation forecasts, rainfall-runoff estimates and stream flow predictions. We are exploring how the Sensor Web can be dynamically configured to allow multi-modal observation across different spatial and temporal scales and will be developing (1) a reference architecture for adaptive/reconfigurable Sensor Webs for near real-time situation awareness of river flow conditions, and (2) establish a research platform for Senor Web Enablement (SWE). The sensing systems at CSIRO adhere to the OGC-SWE standards and publish observation data in O&M. Our Sensor Web is deployed in the South Esk river catchment (North East Tasmaina). We are striving for the adoption of Sensor Web standards for supporting hydrological monitoring/forecasting tasks.

Relevance to SSN-XG: We intend to use ontologies for the representation of the shared data model in the architecture. A hydrology domain-based ontology will be developed based on existing domain ontologies. The ontology developed in this XG will be used and tested in our project for the description of sensors, hydrological models, and processes.

UPM Ontological Engineering Group: Oscar Corcho, Raúl García Castro

IAM Group, University of Southampton: Kevin R. Page

Project: SemsorGrid4Env

Project description: The main objective of SemsorGrid4Env is to specify, design, implement, evaluate and deploy a service-oriented architecture and middleware which allows application developers to build open large-scale semantic-based sensor network grids for environmental management. Such architecture and middleware will enable the rapid development of thin applications (e.g., mashups) that require real-world real-time data coming from heterogeneous sensor networks, making it possible to use sensors for other environmental management purposes than those that they were originally expected to have (hence reducing sensor network deployment costs) and to combine their real-time data with historical data from other data sources, opening possibilities of improving current decision-making procedures in a variety of situations (emergencies, monitoring, etc.).

Relevance to SSN-XG: We intend to work on the refinement of existing sensor ontologies to describe sensor networks and specific measurements. There is also work devoted to the integration of existing relational databases with data streams coming from sensor networks, taking into account quality-of-service features of the different data sources, and rapid application development that allows this combination.

SURA: Luis Bermudez

Project: OOSTethys/Oceans IE

Project description: OOSTethys is a community of software developers and marine scientists who develop open source tools to integrate ocean observing systems. OOSTethys works with standards organizations to exercise specifications and advance them, brings together organizations with experience on serving ocean observing systems, and provides best practices about how to use standards for exchange in marine observations. Our end-to-end "system of systems" includes over 1000 platforms with real-time data. OOSTethys leads the Ocean Science Interoperability Experiment, which is an Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) world initiative to advance standards for advancing interoperability of ocean observing systems using Semantic Web and Sensor Web Enablement technologies.

Relevance to SSN-XG: We currently use ontologies to help discover and categorize observations and processes by tagging Sensor Observations Services Responses (e.g. SensorML) with rich concepts from ontologies. The ontologies used are those created by the Marine Metadata Interoperability Initiative MMI project. We would like to provide our expertise and eventually adopt the decisions of the working group.

MBARI / Marine Metadata interoperability Project: John Graybeal

Project: Device Ontology Working Group

Project Description: The Device Ontology Working Group is trying to create an ontology for marine devices. A primary function of such an ontology will be to provide URIs that can be used in standards such as the Sensor Web Enablement package, where identifying a 'device type' (ha ha) can assume some importance. The MMI project, which provides a framework for the Device Ontology Working Group, is also a collector of references about content standards and protocols (link) and materials about sensor interoperability (less active; link). MMI is developing an ontology/vocabulary repository which is designed to encourage the adoption of semantic technologies by non-technical users. And MMI contributes significantly to the development of OOSTethys and the OGC Oceans Interoperability Experiment.

Relevance to SSN-XG: We have early experience developing a device ontology, as well as lots of references and other material, and experience developing a preliminary platform ontology. MMI's development of the ontology repository gives us awareness of community semantic issues and needs. Also, we help OOSTethys/OCEANS IE, particularly in metadata and semantic areas, and helped write the OCEANS IE Phase 1 report.

CTIC Foundation: Rodrigo García, Víctor Peláez

Project: CETICA La Ciudad Eco Tecnológica (The Eco Technology City)

Project Description: The main objective of the CETICA project is the design and development of a new sustainable building model taking into account energy effiency, ecological sustainability and end user aspects. The project focuses not only the development of new materials and building systems based on steel, but also in the integration of ICT solutions. Part of this large project, the ambient intelligent activity, aims to develop ambient intelligent systems to make living more comfortable and safe. To achieve this goal the components of the house will be equiped with the latest information technologies (such as sensor networks) designed to respond proactively to the needs of each individual (elderly, children, etc.)

Relevance to SSN-XG: We intend to use semantic technologies to describe sensor networks in the home and to represent data coming from those sensors. Analysis processes, fusion techniques and reasoning systems should be executed with the acquired data in order to check data consistency, to interpret measurements and finally to provide services to users. The ontology developed in this XG could be extended to the home domain and it could be used to achieve some of these goals.

Institute for Geoinformatics at the University of Münster: Krzysztof Janowicz

Project: Semantic Integration of Geospatial Information (SIGI)

Project Description: The central research idea of this IRTG is to create and improve methods and tools for geospatial information integration, by developing general and domain-specific theories and models for the semantics of geospatial information. Geospatial information, in forms like digital maps, images, sensor readings, or processing services, reveals the numerous ways in which humans conceptualize and represent their environment. Bridging conceptualizations and representations so that multiple communities can share information is the core task of geospatial information integration. The main impediment against such bridging is the difficulty to describe the semantics of geospatial information so that the information can be discovered, analyzed, and combined.

Relevance to SSN-XG: Sensors as sources of observations are a central part of geospatial information integration. A Semantic Sensor Web layer should support discovery and on-the-fly integration of information from heterogeneous sources. We are interested in work on sensor related ontologies as well as on tools to run on top of the classical OGC servies (such as the Sensor Observation Service (SOS)).

Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research (IGD) in cooperation with GRK 1362 (GKMM): Arthur Herzog

Project: Middleware for Mixed Mode Environments

Project Description: The main objective of our research is to build a middleware which enables interoperability between different devices. We want this middleware to operate on and be used also by small resource constrained devices like wireless sensor motes.

Relevance to SSN-XG: To enable interoperability first of all the different devices should be able to describe themselves: what kind of device they are, what capabilities they have and what services they can offer. To do so we defined a simple but extensible ontology to be used as basis. This base ontology is statically encoded and can be used to efficiently describe a node, search for nodes with specific capabilities, etc.

Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University: Andriy Nikolov

Project: SmartProducts

Project description: The main focus of the SmartProducts project is on developing the scientific and technological basis for building "smart" consumer products with embedded reasoning capabilities. Smart products leverage their “proactive knowledge” (combination of declarative and procedural knowledge componenets) to communicate and co-operate with humans, other products and the environment. Proactive knowledge encompasses knowledge about the product itself (features, functions, dependencies, usage, etc.), its environment (physical context, other smart products) and its users (preferences, abilities, intentions, etc.). In addition, proactive knowledge comprises executable workflows and knowledge about interaction, enabling the smart product to proactively engage in multimodal dialogues with the user.

Relevance to SSN-XG: In order to exhibit situation awareness, a product must possess sensing capabilties and be able to make observations about its environment. This information obtained from sensors must be formally represented to enable reasoning. In the project we use a set of ontologies to describe information about the product domain and the product itself, including available sensors and their observations. In order to achieve reusability, we are interested in aligning our representation of this domain with the common standards.

Digital Enterprise Research Institute : Danh Le Phuoc, Myriam Leggieri, Alexandre Passant, Manfred Hauswirth


Project description: The EU-funded SPITFIRE project ( aims at integrating application-level protocols, software, development environments, and evaluation methodologies from the Web and the Internet of Things. Currently, both still lack of integration and remain heterogeneous. Consequently, application developers have to manually bridge the gap between both, and consequently be experts in both worlds. To achieve this goal of interoperability, the SPITFIRE project works at different layers: from the low-level inter-servicing protocol and network-agnostic communication, to the semantically enhanced description of sensor data and real-world semantic entities, providing semantics-driven service composition and query facilities to end-users.

Relevance to SSN-XG: The SSN XG ontology will be one of the core ontology used in SPITFIRE to describe concepts such as sensors and sensor data themselves. We aim at integrating it with other domain ontologies that describe the real-world entities that surrounds sensors, including humans and their perception, so as to capture raw data and their environmental context. Further, it will help to make sensor data available as Linked Open Data, by linking sensor description to well-known entities from the LOD cloud, such as geolocation features.