TMIS - Topographic Mars Information System

One of the instruments on board of the European Mars Express Spacecraft is the HRSC (High Resolution Stereo Camera). The project group developed the topographic information system TMIS - arelational spatial data catalogue - for managing, archiving and distributing the captured images.

Short Description

This catalogue is the core for data distribution to the international group of Co-Investigators. A second phase, called, covers additional topics. IPF with its expertise in terrain modeling, also concentrates on research for enhancing the quality of the terrain models derived from the images by multi-view matching. Due to the properties of the Mars surface the matching procedure delivers poor results in many areas.

Within an algorithm has been developed which can significantly improve the quality through statistical analysis and by data fusion, thus removing disturbing noise without affecting relevant surface features. A further area deals with hydrological analysis for detecting former potential rivers, lakes and oceans. Though based on the present state of the Mars, the analysis provides valuable objective information for geologists and planetologists.

The European Mars Express mission has become a great success and especially the HRSC delivers excellent images. Therefore, an extension of is planned so that in near future detailed knowledge about the surface of the entire Mars might not only influence our personal image of the neighboring planet, it certainly also deepens our knowledge concerning the history of our planetary system. But most importantly, the results of TMIS and the know-how acquired in the course of the project can easily be transferred to Earth-related research, investigations, and applications.

Project Partners


Institute of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (IPF), Vienna University of Technology  - Karl Kraus and Josef Jansa


  • Freie Universität Berlin Gerhard Neukum (Principal Investigator)
  • Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt Berlin-Adlershof (Data Processing Group)

Contact Address

Institute of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (IPF) - Vienna University of Technology
Karl Kraus and Josef Jansa
Gusshausstrasse 27-29 / 122
A-1040 Vienna
Tel.: +43 (1) 58801 12201
Fax: +43 (1) 58801 12299
E-mail: and