Norwegian Polar Institute Map Data and Services

Basemap Data

The Norwegian Polar Institute offers downloads of the official topographical basemap datasets for Norwegian polar land areas, under these terms of use. The data are either scale independent or created for best visual appearance when printed at selected map scales (see description column). The data are provided in the most commonly used GIS file formats, to be used e.g. to create custom maps or to do analyses. NOTE: The downloads are not maps, but rather map data which can be used to create maps from scratch in GIS software. Click the links below to go to data product page for metadata and data downloads.


Data Product Description Data type
S1000 Kartdata Svalbard 1:1 000 000 basemap themes Vector
S250 Kartdata Svalbard 1:250 000 basemap themes Vector
S100 Kartdata Svalbard 1:100 000 basemap themes Vector
S0 Stedsnavn Svalbard place names Vector
S0 Terrengmodell Svalbard digital elevation models Raster

Jan Mayen

Data Product Description Data type
J1000 Kartdata Jan Mayen 1:1 000 000 basemap themes Vector
J100 Kartdata Jan Mayen 1:100 000 basemap themes Vector
J0 Stedsnavn Jan Mayen place names Vector
J0 Terrengmodell Jan Mayen digital elevation model Raster

Dronning Maud Land

Data Product Description Data type
D250 Kartdata Dronning Maud Land 1:250 000 basemap themes Vector
D0 Stedsnavn Dronning Maud Land place names Vector


Data Product Description Data type
B20 Kartdata Bouvetøya 1:20 000 basemap themes Vector
B0 Stedsnavn Bouvetøya place names Vector
B0 Terrengmodell Bouvetøya digital elevation model Raster

Peter I Øy

Data Product Description Data type
P50 Kartdata Peter I Øy 1:50 000 basemap themes Vector
P0 Stedsnavn Peter I Øy place names Vector
P0 Terrengmodell Peter I Øy digital elevation model Raster

Basemap Services

The Norwegian Polar Institute offers a selection of cached and dynamic basemap services which can be consumed to create interactive web mapping applications or as layers in desktop GIS, under these terms of use. The cached services are tiled map services, which are maps that have been predrawn by the server at defined scales (zoom levels) and stored as graphic files to serve maps fast. The dynamic services are WMS services, which return map images as requested by the user, consisting of the active map layers, map extent and zoom level at the client side.

The cached services can be used in clients with support for ArcGIS Server tiles such as OpenLayers, Google Maps or Esri's JavaScript API in the same way as Google Maps or Esri Maps is built up. Read the developer's guide on how to create web applications with those basemaps.

The dynamic services, as well as the cached services, can be added as layers in most mainstream GIS software, such as described here for ArcGIS and QGIS.

Cached basemap services

Service Name and Preview Layers Projection Service URL Capabilities
NP_Basiskart_Svalbard_WMTS_25833 Svalbard topography ETRS 89 UTM 33 (EPSG:25833) ArcGIS Rest WMTS
NP_Ortofoto_Svalbard_WMTS_25833 Svalbard orthophoto ETRS 89 UTM 33 (EPSG:25833) ArcGIS Rest WMTS
NP_Satellitt_Svalbard_WMTS_25833 Svalbard satellite imagery ETRS 89 UTM 33 (EPSG:25833) ArcGIS Rest WMTS
NP_Basiskart_JanMayen_WMTS_25829 Jan Mayen topography ETRS 89 UTM 29 (EPSG:25829) ArcGIS Rest WMTS
NP_Basiskart_JanMayen_WMTS_25833 Jan Mayen topography ETRS 89 UTM 33 (EPSG:25833) ArcGIS Rest WMTS

Cache zoom levels and scales

To easily combine cache from different services in the same map window, there is an advantage to have a common definition of the geographic area that defines the service. Because the cached services have fixed zoom levels, the service can not deliver tiles that lies between two defined zoom levels.

The table below shows the zoom levels, scales and resolutions for the cached services at the Norwegian Polar Institute. These are the same as in the Norwegian Mapping Authority caches for mainland Norway.

Zoom Level Scale Resolution
0 1:81 920 000 21674.7100160867
1 1:40 960 000 10837.3550080434
2 1:20 480 000 5418.67750402168
3 1:10 240 000 2709.33875201084
4 1:5 120 000 1354.66937600542
5 1:2 560 000 677.334688002709
6 1:1 280 000 338.667344001355
7 1:640 000 169.333672000677
8 1:320 000 84.6668360003387
9 1:160 000 42.3334180001693
10 1:80 000 21.1667090000847
11 1:40 000 10.5833545000423
12 1:20 000 5.29167725002117
13 1:10 000 2.64583862501058
14 (orthophoto) 1:5 000 1.3229193125052918
15 (orthophoto) 1:2 500 0.6614596562526459
16 (orthophoto) 1:1 250 0.33072982812632296
17 (orthophoto) 1:625 0.16536491406316148

Image formats and coordinate systems

Services are available in two image formats:

  • Image / jpeg (does not support transparency)
  • Image / png (supports transparency)

Tile size for jpeg is about 1/3 of the png so it must be considered what is important, speed or support for transparency. The image tiles have a resolution of 96 dpi with a size of (256x256 pixels).

Dynamic basemap services

Service Name and Preview Layers Service URL Capabilities
NP_Basiskart_Svalbard_WMS Svalbard topography ArcGIS Rest WMS
NP_Basiskart_JanMayen_WMS Jan Mayen topography ArcGIS Rest WMS

Thematic Map Services

NPI delivers a wealth of thematic maps as dynamic map services. Dynamic map service is a service where a server request to send map section in the form of raster files back to the user, either directly in the browser, a web application or a desktop application.

Service URL Name Show on Svalbardkartet WMS Capabilities Owner
Glaciers Svalbard Glacier Area Outlines Isbreer GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Geologi-S250 Geological Map of Svalbard 1:250000 Geologi 1:250000 GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Geologi-S750 Geological Map of Svalbard 1:750000 Geologi 1:750000 GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Sjøfuglkolonier Seabirds of Svalbard Sjøfugl kolonier GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Hvalrossliggeplasser Walrus haulout sites Hvalrossliggeplasser GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Roye Arctic char in Svalbard Roye GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
SjøpattedyrObservasjon Marine mammals sightings Sjøpattedyr Observasjoner2009 GetCapablities Norwegian Polar Institute
PRIMOS PRIMOS - Prioriterte miljøområder på Svalbard PRIMOS GetCapablities Norwegian Polar Institute
Vegetasjon Svalbard Vegetation Vegetasjon GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Biogeografiske Biogeographic zones of Svalbard Biogeografiske GetCapabilities Norwegian Polar Institute
Strandrydding Beach cleaning activities in Svalbard Strandrydding GetCapablities Governor of Svalbard
Skuterbegrensning Snowmobile restrictions on Svalbard Skuterbegrensning GetCapabilities Governor of Svalbard
Skyte-jaktforbudssoner Hunting restrictions on Svalbard Skyte-jaktforbudssoner GetCapabilities Governor of Svalbard
Svalbardgrenser Svalbard sea borders Svalbardgrenser GetCapabilities Governor of Svalbard
Utmål Utmål på Svalbard Utmål GetCapabilities Bergmesteren for Svalbard
Naturvernområde Naturvernområde Naturvernområde GetCapabilities Miljødirektorat

Dynamic services based on WMS specification are flexible and provides the user with many options, such as:

  • Choosing which map projection will be produced in
  • Turn on or off layers in the service.
  • Choose scale freely
  • Which image format and transparency to be produced
  • Retrieving Legend of the various map layers
  • Obtaining basic information about objects on the map from attributes (feature info) etc

All services are published on NPI's map services directory.

Terms of Use

By using the map services and basemap datasets, you agree with the terms of use.

Norwegian Polar Data

Norwegian Polar Institute

9296 Tromsø