International Hydrographic Organisation (IHO) World Hydrographic Day


“Hydrography – enabling autonomous technologies”

21 June 2020


The 2020 theme highlights the pivotal role of hydrography in autonomous technologies. Autonomous platforms such as autonomous surface vehicles (ASV), autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) and Lidar-equipped unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), such as drones can be used to conduct hydrographic surveys. In doing so, hydrography provides a testing ground for these technologies, while at the same time increasing the coverage of properly surveyed areas. As a knock-on effect, these initiatives will pave the way for the development of safe, secure and environmentally sound Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS) operations under the auspices of the IMO, which also require certified up-to-date hydrographic information in order to be implemented.


In November 2005, the United Nations adopted Resolution A/60/30, which includes the statement:

“…Welcomes the adoption by the International Hydrographic Organization of the World Hydrography Day, to be celebrated annually on 21 June, with the aim of giving suitable publicity to its work at all level and of increasing the coverage of hydrographic information on a global basis, and urges all States to work with that organization to promote safe navigation, especially in the areas of international navigation, ports and where there are vulnerable or protected marine areas.”

The World Hydrographic Day (WHD) theme, as in previous years, is intended to provide a broad range of opportunities to publicize the hydrographic work and services provided by national hydrographic offices, industry stakeholders and expert contributors, as well as the scientific community. The relevant topics include, but are not limited to:

  •  All commercial shipping is now going fully digital.

  •  To complete our image of the earth and make best use of it.

  •  The Work and Contribution of Hydrographers.

  •  100th anniversary of the formation of the International Hydrographic Organisation (IHO).

In support of WHD 2020, the IHO Secretariat will feed the established IHO Facebook page, Twitter account, LinkedIn account and YouTube channel. In addition, the IHO Secretariat will organize a dedicated page on the IHO website, where papers and other material relevant to the celebration will be posted.

Additional information can be found on the IHO website.


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