About us
Scientific Meetings


Home > Publications > IAG Newsletters

print version


March 2012

posted by
Gyula Tóth
IAG Newsletter March 2012

March 2012

Editor: Gyula Tóth

IAG Communication and Outreach Branch

MTA-BME Research Group for Phys. Geod. and Geodyn.

 Department of Geodesy and Surveying

Budapest University of Technology and Economics

H-1521 Budapest, Hungary

Information Service of the International Association of Geodesy

http://www.iag-aig.org             newsletter@iag-aig.org


General Announcements. 3

150 Years International Association of Geodesy. 3

Invitation for proposals for changes to the IAG Statutes and Bylaws. 4

Meeting Announcements. 4

Meetings Calendar 4

IERS GGFC Workshop. 4

European Geosciences Union General Assembly 2012. 5

10th International Conference on Southern Hemisphere Meteorology and Oceanography. 5

FIG Working Week 2012. 5

United Nations/Latvia Workshop on the Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems. 5

6th GNSS Vulnerabilities and Solutions Conference. 5

Candian Geophysical Union National Conference. 5

IUGG Conference on Mathematical Geophysics. 5

SGEM 2012. 5

4th International Conference on Cartography and GIS. 5

7th Portuguese-Spanish Assembly of Geodesy and Geophysics. 5

2nd IAHR Europe Congress. 5

XXXII SCAR Open Science Conference. 5

2012 IGS Workshop. 5

39th COSPAR Scientific Assembly. 6

IGS Analysis Center Workshop 2012. 6

AOGS-AGU (WPGM) Joint Assembly. 6

International Symposium on Space Geodesy and Earth System (SGES2012) 6

ESC 2012. 6

International Astronomical Union General Assembly. 6

International Summer School on Space Geodesy and Earth System.. 6

IAU Joint Discussion (JD7): Space-time reference systems for future research. 6

Scientific Colloquium of the Leibniz Society. 6

GRACE Science Team Meeting 2012. 6

17th International Symposium on Earth Tides and Earth Rotation ETS 2012. 6

20 Years of Progress in Radar Altimetry. 6

IDS Workshop. 6

European VLBI Network (EVN) Symposium.. 6

International Symposium on Gravity, Geoid and Height Systems GGHS 2012. 7

25th CODATA General Assembly. 7

Pan Ocean Remote Sensing Conference (PORSEC-2012) 7

AGU 2012 Fall Meeting. 7

European Geosciences Union General Assembly 2013. 7

Joint  IAMAS-IACS Assembly. 7

Joint  IAHS-IAPSO-IASPEI Scientific Assembly. 7

26th International Cartographic Conference. 7

12th IAGA Scientific  Assembly. 7

IAG Scientific Assembly. 7

AGU 2013 Fall Meeting. 7

Reports. 8

NAG 2011 General Assembly/Conference. 8




The IAG Newsletter is under the editorial responsibility of the Communication and Outreach Branch (COB) of the IAG.

It is an open forum and contributors are welcome to send material (preferably in electronic form) to the IAG COB (newsletter@iag-aig.org). These contributions should complement information sent by IAG officials or by IAG symposia organizers (reports and announcements). The IAG Newsletter is published monthly. It is available in different formats from the IAG new internet site: http://www.iag-aig.org

Each IAG Newsletter includes several of the following topics:

I.        news from the Bureau Members

II.      general information

III.    reports of IAG symposia

IV.    reports by commissions, special commissions or study groups

V.      symposia announcements

VI.    book reviews

VII.  fast bibliography

Books for review are the responsibility of:

C.C Tscherning

University of Copenhagen

Dept. of Geophysics

Copenhagen, Denmark

Fax: +45 35365357

E-mail: cct@gfy.ku.dk





150 Years International Association of Geodesy


The International Association of Geodesy (IAG) is celebrating its 150th anniversary in 2012. At the invitation of the Prussian General Johann Jacob Baeyer (1794-1885), representatives of the states of Prussia, Austria and Saxony met from 24th  to 26th April 1862 in Berlin to discuss Baeyer’s “Proposal for a Central European Arc Measurement” (“Entwurf zu einer mitteleuropäischen Gradmessung”), which he had sent out in 1861 to all Central European states. By the end of 1862, 16 states had already agreed to participate in the project: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, seven German states (Baden, Bavaria, Hannover, Mecklenburg, Prussia, Saxony, Saxe-Gotha), Italy, The Netherlands, Poland, Sweden and Norway (in personal union), and Switzerland. This was a great success and the start of an organised international collaboration in geodesy. The IAG counts this international scientific (governmental) initiative, and the organisation it spawned, as its origin.

The idea for the project had been submitted by Baeyer to the Prussian Ministry of War in his document “On the size and figure of the Earth: a memorandum on the establishment of a Central European arc measurement, along with a sketch map” (“Über die Größe und Figur der Erde: eine Denkschrift zur Begründung einer Mitteleuropäischen Gradmessung nebst einer Übersichtskarte”). The aim was to connect the numerous Central European astronomical observatories by the existing or to be planned triangulation networks, in order to determine the regional and local anomalies of the curvature of the figure of the Earth (i.e. the deflections of the vertical and thus the relative structure of the geoid). This was the basis for all precise point positioning in science and practice, and the beginning of interpreting these anomalies with respect to the structure and composition of the outer layer of the Earth, which was explicitly mentioned by Baeyer as a scientific challenge.

J. J. Baeyer memorial in Berlin Müggelheim and the first page of the Minutes of the Meeting in 1862


In October 1864, the first “General Conference of the Representatives to the Central European Arc Measurement” took place in Berlin. The organisational structure (Permanent Commission, Central Bureau, and triennial General Conferences) was agreed to and a research programme was set up. The IAG considers this conference as its first General Assembly. J. J. Baeyer was appointed Director of the Central Bureau and P. A. Hansen appointed President of the Permanent Commission. The project extended rapidly to other European states, and consequently the name of the organisation was changed in 1867 to “Europäische Gradmessung”, and in 1886 to “Internationale Erdmessung” (in French: “Association Internationale de Géodésie”, in English: “International Geodetic Association”) with additional member states Argentina, Chile, Japan, Mexico, and USA. Baeyer died in 1885, and under his successor, Friedrich Robert Helmert, the Central Bureau moved from Berlin to Potsdam, together with the Geodetic Institute, which is the predecessor of today’s GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ) Potsdam.

To pay tribute to its origins, IAG will hold its regular quadrennial Scientific Assembly as the official anniversary celebration in September 2013, between the dates of the foundation and first General Conference of the Mitteleuropäische Gradmessung, in Potsdam and Berlin.



Adam, J.: Update of the History of the International Association of Geodesy. J. Geodesy (82) 662-674, 2008.

Angus-Leppan, P.-V.: A note on the history of the International Association of Geodesy. Bull. Geod. (58) 224-229, 1984.

Beutler, G., H. Drewes, A. Verdun: The new structure of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) viewed from the perspective of history. J. Geodesy (77) 566-575, 2004.

Helmert, F.R.: Die Internationale Erdmessung in den ersten fünfzig Jahren ihres Bestehens. Internationale Monatsschrift für Wissenschaft, Kunst und Technik (7) 398-424, 1913.

Levallois, J.J.: The history of the International Association of Geodesy. Bull. Geod. (54) 249-313, 1980.

Louis, M.: History of the International Association of Geodesy. Bull. Geod. (66) 79-81, 1992.

Tardi, P: Hundert Jahre Internationale Erdmessung. Z. f. Vermessungswesen (88) 2-10, 1963

Torge, W.: The International Association of Geodesy (IAG) - More than 130 years of international cooperation. J. Geodesy (70) 840-845, 1996.

Torge, W.: The International Association of Geodesy 1862 to 1922: from a regional project to an international organization. J. Geodesy (78) 558-568, 2005.

Whitten, Ch.: History of the International Association of Geodesy. Bull. Geod. (62) 197-206, 1988.


Hermann Drewes

Secretary General of IAG





Invitation for proposals for changes to the IAG Statutes and Bylaws


Article 16 of IAG’s Statutes specifies that the Association shall review its Statutes and Bylaws to ensure an up-to-date structure of its scientific organization every eight years. The last time such a review was initiated was about eight years ago under the presidency of Gerard Beutler. It is now therefore time that we again take a fresh look at our Statutes and Bylaws. To achieve this goal, a Review Committee (traditionally called the Cassinis Committee) was appointed in the fall of 2011 by the IAG Executive. The committee is chaired by Michael Sideris and includes as members Harald Schuh, Ruth Neilan and Yoichi Fukuda. A proposal with all suggested revisions will be made by the Cassinis Committee for consideration by the IAG Executive and possibly the Council at the 2013 Scientific Assembly. In this way, we are hoping to get the Council’s reaction and input to the proposed changes before these are finalized and approved at the next IUGG General Assembly in 2015.

With this announcement, the Cassinis Committee is inviting proposals for changes of any article of the Statutes and Bylaws. Proposals can be submitted through the IAG website Forum (www.iag-aig.org/proposals). The actual Statutes and By-laws can be found on the IAG website.  All proposals submitted between March 1, 2012 and February 1, 2013 will be considered by the Cassinis Committee.

We are very much looking forward to receiving your contributions.


Michael Sideris, Harald Schuh, Ruth Neilan, Yoichi Fukuda







Meetings Calendar


April 20, 2012, Courtyard Vienna Messe, Vienna, Austria

IERS Global Geophysical Fluids Center (GGFC) Workshop

URL: http://geophy.uni.lu/

April 22-27, 2012, Vienna, Austria

URL: http://meetings.copernicus.org/egu2012/

April 23-27, 2012, Noumea, New-Caledonia

URL: http://www.colloque.ird.fr/icshmo-2012

May 6-10, 2012, Rome, Italy

Knowing to manage the territory, protect the environment, evaluate the cultural heritage.

URL: http://www.fig.net/fig2012/

May 14-18, 2012, Riga, Latvia

URL: http://www.unoosa.org/oosa/en/SAP/gnss/index.html

May 21-24, 2012, Baška, Krk Island, Croatia

URL: http://www.rin.org.uk/events.aspx?ID=51&SectionID=23&ItemID=1656

June 5-8, 2012, Banff, Canada

URL: http://www.elements2012.ca/

June 18-22, 2012, Edinburgh, Scotland

URL: http://www.cmgedinburgh2012.org.uk/

June 17-23, 2012, Albena Summer Resort, Bulgaria

URL: http://www.sgem.org/

June 18-22, 2012, Albena Summer Resort, Bulgaria

URL: http://www.cartography-gis.com/4thConference/Index.html

June 25-29, 2012, San Sebastian, Spain

URL: www.7ahpgg.com

2nd IAHR Europe Congress

June 27-29, 2012, Munich, Germany

URL: http://www.iahr2012.tum.de/

July 13-25, 2012, Portland, Oregon, USA

URL: http://scar2012.geol.pdx.edu/

July 23-27, 2012, Olsztyn, Poland

URL: http://www.uwm.edu.pl/kaig/igs_workshop_2012/

July 14-22, 2012, Mysore, India

URL: http://www.cospar-assembly.org/

IGS Analysis Center Workshop 2012

July 23-27, 2012, Olsztyn, Poland

URL: http://igscb.jpl.nasa.gov/pipermail/igsmail/2011/006436.html

August 13-17, 2012, Singapore, Singapore

URL: http://www.asiaoceania.org/aogs2012/ 

August 19-20, 2012,  Shanghai, China

URL: http://www.shao.ac.cn/meetings

August 19-24, 2012, Moscow, Russia

European Seismological Commission 33rd General Assembly

URL: www.esc2012-moscow.org

August 20-31, 2012, Beijing, China

URL: http://www.astronomy2012.org/

August 21-25, 2012,  Shanghai, China

URL: http://www.shao.ac.cn/schools 

August 27-29, 2012, Beijing, China

URL: http://www.iau.org/science/meetings/future/joint_discussions/1058/

September 14, 2012, Berlin, Germany

Leibniz Society of Sciences at Berlin (www.leibniz-sozietaet.de) organizes a Scientific Colloquium on the topics of scientific geodesy and history of geodesy. Contact person: Heinz Kautzleben (kautzleben@t-online.de)

September 17-20, 2012, Potsdam, Germany

URL: http://www.gfz-potsdam.de

September 24-28, 2012, Cairo, Egypt

URL: http://www.ets2012.com/

September 24-29, 2012, Venice, Italy

URL: http://www.altimetry2012.org/

September 25-26, 2012, Venice, Italy

URL: http://ids-doris.org/report/meeting-presentations/ids-workshop-2012.html

October 9-12, 2012, Bordeaux, France

URL: http://iag.dgfi.badw.de/index.php?id=291

October 9-12, 2012, Venice, Italy

URL: http://www.gravityfield.org/

October 26-27, 2012, Beijing, China

URL: http://www.codata.org

November 5-9, 2012, Kochi, Kerala, India

URL: http://www.porsec2012.incois.gov.in/

December 6-10, 2012, San Francisco, USA

URL: http://www.agu.org/meetings/

April 7-12, 2013, Vienna, Austria

URL: http://www.egu.eu/meetings/meeting-overview.html

July 8-12, 2013, Davos, Switzerland

Davos Atmosphere and Cryosphere Assembly 2013, Ice & Air – Process Interactions

URL: www.daca-13.org

July 22-26, 2013, Gothenburg, Sweden

URL: http://www.iaspei.org/meetings/forthcoming.html#iaspei2013

August 25-30, 2013, Dresden, Germany

URL: http://www.icc2013.org/

August 26-31, 2013, Mérida, Mexico

URL: www.iaga2013.org.mx

September 1-16, 2013, Potsdam, Germany

URL: http://iag.dgfi.badw.de/index.php?id=291

December 9-13, 2013, San Francisco, USA

URL: http://www.agu.org/cgi-bin/gycal?details=1&file=2013120900320182043&li




NAG 2011 General Assembly/Conference

14-16 September 2011, Enugu, Nigeria


The Nigeria Association of Geodesy (NAG) held a National Conference/General Assembly at the Moot Court of the Law Faculty of the University of Nigeria, Enugu campus from 14th – 16th September, 2011 with the theme: National Challenges in the 21st Century and Geodetic Solutions. The subthemes were

i.                     Geo-hazard threats and Geodynamics

ii.                    Geodesy and Advances in Nigeria Space Research & Development Programme

iii.                  Geodesy in Nigerian Coastal and Marine Environmental

iv.                  Geodetic Data in Economic and Environmental Management

v.                   Geodesy and National Security

Two Association Lectures (by Prof FA Fajemirokun and Prof DMJ Fubara) and more than 20 technical papers on the theme and sub-themes were presented. The Conference highlighted modern geodetic activities and took the audience to the frontiers of current researches in Geodesy. Also, how recent developments in geodetic techniques are solving societal problems, thereby positioning geodesy at the centre of human activities, were discussed. Seventy two (72) persons drawn from various institutions/establishments registered as participants.

NAG is an association that is aimed at providing a nonpartisan and non-profit making, national forum for all in Nigeria concerned with the effective application of geodesy and related sciences to scholarship and human progress and development. NAG is affiliated and maintains close collaboration with the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) and its various arms and affiliates. NAG is also one of the components of the Nigerian Union of Planetary and Radios Sciences (NUPRS) which is affiliated to the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG). For more information on NAG contact Prof. Francis I. Okeke (francis.okeke@unn.edu.ng).


Please find below the Communiqué of the Conference:



The 2011 General Assembly/ Conference of the Nigeria Association of Geodesy (NAG) was held in University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus (UNEC) Enugu, from Wednesday 14th to Friday 16th September 2011 with the theme: National Challenges in the 21st Century and Geodetic Solutions.

The Conference was declared open by the Vice-Chancellor, University of Nigeria, ably represented by Prof. G. O. S. Amadi. Professors F.A. Fajemirokun and D. M. J. Fubara delivered Association lectures on: The future of Geodesy in Nigeria: Issues of Capacity Building; and Space Geodesy in Coastal and Marine Environment respectively.

The Technical Sessions dwelt extensively on the following sub-themes:

i.                     Geodesy, Geo-Hazard Threats and Security Issues in Nigeria

ii.                    Advances in Geodetic Infrastructure Development in Nigeria;

iii.                  Geodesy in Economic, Coastal and Environmental Management in Nigeria;

After  due  deliberations,  the  Conference  arrived  at  the  following  resolutions  and recommendations.


1.       Overview of Geodesy in Nigeria

The Conference examined the development and challenges of geodesy in Nigeria form the inception and recommends that Geodesists should go back to drawing board, define priorities and draw up programmes of actions at finding solution to the geodetic challenges.

2.       Geo-hazard Threats and Security Issues

(a)     Geo-hazard:

The Conference expressed satisfaction with the application of Geodetic Solutions to solving geo-hazard problems in Nigeria and recommends the comprehensive use of geodetic techniques in monitoring flood disasters and large structures (high-rise buildings, bridges, dams, oil rigs, oil tanks, etc) in Nigeria.

(b)     Security Issues:

The  Conference  appreciates  the  efforts  made  by  governments  in  boundary demarcations in Nigeria and therefore recommends that all states and national boundaries should properly and physically demarcated and monitored to avoid boundary skirmishes and enhance peace and development in Nigeria.

3.       Geodetic Infrastructure Development

(a)     Space Geodesy:

The Conference appreciates the provision of the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Continuously Operating Reference System (CORS) in Nigeria by the Federal Government and therefore recommends that more of the infrastructure be deplored to cover the length and breadth of Nigeria; and to invest more on collaborative research on the use of the infrastructure for Land Reform and Space Research and Development in Nigeria.

(b)     Physical Geodesy:

The Conference regretted the paucity of gravity data in Nigeria for Research and Development, which has hampered determination of accurate height data for geophysical and oil/mineral exploration. The Conference therefore recommends that gravity observations already done in Nigeria should be made available to Geodesists for relevant Research and Development.

4.       Economic, Coastal and Environmental Management

The Conference expressed concern on the danger posed by sea level rise around the coastal regions of Nigeria and recommends that the Governments should provide Tides Gauges and other Facilities to Monitor and manage the phenomenon.

5.       Capacity Building

i.                The conference expressed the need for capacity building in all aspect of Geodesy and therefore recommends close collaboration between NAG, NIS, SURCON, OSGOF and NASRDA to tap from the expertise of Nigerian Geodesists.

ii.               The conference observed lack of interest in Geodesy and consequently recommends that NAG should take necessary steps to create the awareness and liaise with necessary institutions to reverse this trend;

iii.             In order to tackle what seems to be lack of interest in the area of Geodesy and Geodynamics, institutions have been challenged proactive and encourage the study of Physics and Mathematics which are the fundamental subjects.

6.       The Way Forward

The Conference observed the following as the way forward in the Institutional, corporate and individual capacity development and utilization of Geodesy in Nigeria.


a.       The NAG viewed with concern the plan to jettison Nigeria Geodetic Datum in preference for the Global WGS-84 Geocentric Datum for mapping operations and therefore recommends the need to study the implications of such a decision by High Powered Study Group and take a final position.

b.       Making Centre for Geodesy and Geodynamics (CGG) in Toro a Centre of Excellence;

c.        Resolving all issues relating to Geodetic Control Network (Horizontal, Vertical and Datum Definition);

d.       Government Agencies and other Stakeholders in Geodesy should show more interest in Geodesy by formally challenging Geodesists with National problems and sit in to listen and exchange ideas at Geodetic Conferences.


Finally, we express our appreciation to the Local Organizing Committee (LOC), the sponsors, the Management of Moot Court Hall and the Vice Chancellor University of Nigeria, and the Chairman, NIS (Nigerian Institution of Surveyors) Enugu State. Special thanks to all delegates and participants for their support and maximum cooperation throughout the Conference.



Dr. L. M. Ojigi, Chairman

Dr. V. N. Uzodinma, Member

Dr. J. D. Dodo, Member


Francis I. Okeke