Marine Geoscience Data System

Virtual Ocean

Virtual Ocean

Virtual Ocean
Virtual Ocean is being maintained, but is no longer under active development.

August 24, 2015 - Version 2.6.0 released

Virtual Ocean integrates the GeoMapApp tool suite with the NASA World Wind 3-D earth browser to create a powerful new platform for interdisciplinary research and education.

The Global Multi-Resolution Topography (GMRT) synthesis developed by the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS) is the primary base map for Virtual Ocean, providing access to a comprehensive multi-resolution compilation of satellite altimetry and multibeam bathymetry data. Several MGDS data sets are accessible in Virtual Ocean through live OGC-standard Web services. Options are also provided for users to import their own data sets.

Click here to launch Virtual Ocean with Java Webstart. (?)


Java version 1.7 or later. Virtual Ocean has been tested on the Windows (XP, Vista, and 7), Mac OS X (10.5, 10.6, 10.7 and 10.8), Red Hat Enterprise Linux (4, 5 and 6), and Solaris (8 and 10) operating systems.

Note: For best performance, a 3-D graphics card with up-to-date drivers is necessary and the display should be set to 32-bit "true color".

Displayed Maps, Images, and Data Tables are not to be used for Navigation Purposes.


02.17.2014: version 2.5.9 released
08.06.2013: version 2.5.8 released
Virtual Ocean now displays seismic reflection profiles in 3-D fence projections and allows importing of fence diagrams from your local file system
The tiling scheme of the elevation tiles was recently changed at NASA and has been updated in Virtual Ocean version 2.3.0 and higher. If you have not already done so for Version 2.3.0, it is recommended you clear your cache files by doing the following:
  1. Launch the new Version 2.4.0 Virtual Ocean from the click "here" link on this webpage.
  2. From the menu select File -> Clear Data Cache... A Pop Up Window should appear.
  3. Next, select the first checkbox option 'World Wind Earth Data'.
  4. Select OK and Restart Virtual Ocean 2.4.0
  5. The initial required restart after clearing your cache will take longer then usual. This behavior is expected.

For a detailed image or for those who wish to know the location of the cache files on your OS click here.

Learn more about Virtual Ocean

Visit the Help Page for more information on how to use Virtual Ocean.

Join Our Mailing List

Subscribe to the announce-list, a moderated forum where developers will post release information and critical updates.