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IR-GIS ® was conceived, designed and developed in 2010 because of Mr Holland's keen interest in aviation and the desire to merge his passions of programming, radio, engineering and flying. It also turned out to be a pretty cool distraction, particularly the 3D MapWorld steroscopic Virtual Reality product (or is that RealWorld, its undecided by the marketing folk).


IR-GIS ® software was deliberately designed to scale:

  • IR-GIS ® product is designed to handle large volumes of data while remaining responsive to user input.
  • Data can be sourced from multiple inputs and presented in multiple layers to suit the user’s requirements.
  • Real-time messages are XML based using ir-xml, with user extensible schema. Users may also define the attribute indexing schema that is employed within the HPS in support of free-text and specific attribute queries.
  • Coded entirely in Java, the multi-threaded design takes advantage of today’s multicore CPUs meaning a high performance experience for the user on machiens of modern with multi-cpu-core and hyper-threaded architecture.
  • Input of network data via JMS directly to the MapView clients means the system has a high degree of fault tolerance and scalability with no central servers outside the JMS servers or network contributing to bottlenecks.
  • The IR-GIS ® HPS instance provides persistance of real-time data, and is available to capture all traffic for later display and analysis in conjunction with the IR-GIS ® MapView client Historical Search and Retrieve tabs.
  • Supported searches are Minimum Bounding Rectangle of Latitude and Longitude, Date and Time, and text based attribute searches with wild-card matching, with AND and OR conjunctions.
  • Inbuilt trackers: IR-GIS ® MapView and HPS can simultaneously track in excess of 60,000 features/platforms and associate a configurable number of position reports based on time or extent
  • Within IR-GIS ® Mapview multiple real-time layers are rendered concurrently, e.g two layers of 60,000 vessels with 6 hour tracks and 6 layers of 4000 aircraft with 6 minute tracks are easily tracked and rendered in less than a second.
  • IR-GIS ® HPS real-time processing involves: parsing, recording and tracking of PositionReports and text associated with the PositionReports is indexed in real-time.
  • IR-GIS ® ir-xml also supports non-geospatial text data that containing time and text attributes that are also parsed, stored concurrently alongside geospatial data i.e. IR-GIS ® HPS is a geospatial and texual real-time database.
  • IR-GIS ® ir-xml is published within the MapView Help and within the product release notes where the query commands, responses and interface are also published.
  • IR-GIS ® specialist textual query applications may be developed by the customer or via the IR-GIS ® vendor.
  • IR-GIS ® MapView realtime layers may be configured to support track lengths and use the HPS to recall recent historical data that fits within the track window so complete tracks are available within the real-time layers across restarts of the MapView client, which means the operator does not have to wait for the track window duration to see complete tracks on restart of the MapView client.
  • With the advent on the new IR-GIS ® MapWorld product, real-time aircraft tracks are displayed with altitude in reference to mean-sea-leve(MSL)
  • IR-GIS ® MapWorld support various eye aspects, including:
    • birds-eye, and even 2D
    • terrain perspective
    • fly-by perspective.
  • IR-GIS ® MapWorld sports stereoscope red-cyan and true-colour analglyph projections at video frame-rates - read that as Virtual Reality.
  • With the proliferation and danger of drones, IR-GIS ® MapWorld would be ideal for management and tracking.


System Engineering

Position based information display, originally designed for high-volume fast input real-time position reports of aircraft, but also extensible to slower reports such as maritime.

Ideal for processing small to very large scale vehicle tracking messages, such as:

  • Shipping
  • Truck lines
  • Buses
  • Taxis
  • Emergency services
  • Transport companies
  • Air Traffic management systems
  • Situational awareness displays
  • drone tracking

Event based information display.

Allows events to be represented in real time, such as the input from a network of sensors. This allows applications such as:

  • Alarm systems
  • Weather monitoring systems
  • Process monitoring
  • Emergency service monitoring
  • Distress system monitoring

Control and Monitoring.

In addition to event monitoring, two way communications allow the system to get the status of remote equipment on demand, and to send commands to the remote equipment. For example:

  • Process control
  • Security systems
  • Control of remote equipment

Data Capture and Analysis

A high performance archiving server has been developed as part of the system. All incoming traffic can be stored for later analysis. Search tools can provide time, location and feature based searches with fast response times. This can provide, for example:

  • Movements of a specific vehicle at a certain time
  • History of data from a sensor (such as temperature over time)
  • Time and location of an event


  • Built as Rich Client Platform plugins to the Open Source udig code base, using eclipse, apache projects and Java.
  • Incorporates Open Standards: OGC, XML and JMS.
  • User extensible real-time message format (to be published soon).
  • Multiple file load and save formats: xml, KML, CSV and others - via plugin extension points.
  • Map layer sources offer: real-time tracks and position reports, ESRI ® shape files, images, databases, and can use Open Geographic Consortium compliant Web Feature Service and Web Map Service servers.
  • Complete multi-threaded design to take advantage of modern CPU architectures.
  • Multi-threaded, high performance, highly scalable real-time live data position display.
  • Concurrent and multiple real-time live data layers coexist with concurrent traditional map layers.
  • All map layers, including the real-time layers are styled using the Style Layer Descriptor OGC standard.
  • SLD provides dynamic Styling for the real-time layer on the fly.
  • Real-time data is fed directly to IR-GIS ® MapView, IR-GIS ® MapWorld and IR-GIS ® HPS via Java Messaging Services - specifically Apache ActiveMQ.
  • JMS supports failover and load balancing.
  • Extensible message formats with attributes visible in the Info selection Tool and participating in the display styling.
  • The IR-GIS ® clients and HPS contain trackers that can associate unidentified position reports (dots) with features (vehicles) by correlating the attributes, time and location with previous position reports.
  • Highly configurable views and perspectives.
  • Multiple real-time message streams can be recorded by a central Historical Pullback Server (HPS) in real-time
  • The IR-GIS ® MapView client (and soon the IR-GIS @reg; MapWorld) can use the HPS via a query interface to search, retrieve and visualise historical messages - just like real-time messages - for post event analysis.
  • The IR-GIS MapView Historical Query Interface offers: time, region and free-text searches (and we are considering exposing the HPS API).
  • Additional plugin tools are provided within IR-GIS ® MapView to replay and filter historical data to aid analysis.
  • The IR-GIS ® HPS is efficient, multi-threaded and has a smaller CPU footprint than traditional relational and text-search databases.
  • Maps and their layers may be composed into reports that can be exported to image formats or printed or converted to PDF.
  • A templating system is provided to permit users to import and arrange images and text to decorate and brand their reports
  • Our products use purpose built collections which return memory to the operating system when the memory is not required, and Reference caches permitting the garbage collector to optimise the memory footprint.
  • The product code has neither memory nor resource leaks for sustained operations.
  • Maps may be sourced from traditional OGC map and feature servers.
  • Additional plugins available on request.
  • Responsive support and development.
  • IR-GIS ® messaging input is user extensible, with user defined schema.
  • IR-GIS ® MapView is extensible via RCP plugin technology and IR-GIS ® Product is extensible on request.


The future of this product has been examined with the following capability assessment which will lead to our roadmaps, which we will publish in due course: