ISO 19115 Geographic Metadata Information


The Earth Science Division (ESD) Base Metadata Requirements document defines the ESD-approved implementation guidelines for required metadata to be included in science data products. The metadata requirements represented in this memo provide a means of assuring the consistency of data requirements across subsystems, and supporting the data standardization necessary for system interoperability. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Geographic Information – Metadata standard 19115 (and related standards) shall be used to describe science data products. This standard includes two parts, 19115 and 19115-2. Part 2 and revisions to 19115 that are currently being developed by ISO, include elements that are critical for NASA collections and products. In addition, the data quality elements of 19115 have been extracted into another standard (ISO 19157). Complete descriptions of NASA collections and products will require elements from all of these standards.

NASA conventions and best practices for ISO 19115 are currently under development, but a wealth of user resources are available.

More Information

Detailed Requirements Information

NASA Base Metadata Requirements

User Resources

NASA ISO for EOSDIS: Resource page

ISO schemas: ISO 19115 metadata conventions for NASA Earth science data

NASA ESDIS Unified Metadata Model (UMM): The Unified Metadata Model (UMM) encompasses various metadata profiles maintained and archived by EOSDIS and will be used by the Common Metadata Repository to drive search and retrieval of metadata cataloged within that system. UMM profiles are not metadata standards. UMM will include ISO encodings.

NOAA's ISO wiki: More examples from NOAA, which are informing the NASA ISO effort.

ESIP's metadata work: The Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) is working on various metadata dialects including ISO. This work, including ISO information and examples, can be found here.

NASA employees and those supporting NASA projects can obtain official ISO documentation at no cost, via the NASA Technical Standards Program. You will need a NASA Agency User ID and password to access the Standards site. For those who don't have an Agency User ID, please contact Andrew Mitchell (andrew.e.mitchell @

Please send comments on the metadata requirements specification to

Page Last Updated: May 3, 2019 at 10:03 AM EDT