You can see a synthesis spreadsheet of the units lists HERE.

No. of Units Listed 157 260
  • Combed out of actually received marine datasets
  • Every record has a full name, an abbreviated name, and a unique 4-letter code
  • No codes; just somewhat abbreviated names
Content Governance Internal/informal HERE

Primary Standards for Consideration

  1. BODC - From http://vocab.ndg.nerc.ac.uk/client/vocabServer.jsp; the codes are curiously contained only in the URLs and not in a separate list column
  2. Unified Code for Units of Measure in OWL - From http://marinemetadata.org/examples/mmihostedwork/ontologieswork/ontologies/ontrep.html/
    1. HTML View

Additional Resources

  1. Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Canada - Units list, but no codes


  1. NIST Special Publication 330: the International System of Units (SI) - Basis for all of the "units," which should properly be called "derived units" to reflect the fact that only the SI terms are really the basic "units" for all modern systems.
    1. NOTE: The SI System is officially published as ISO 1000, SI Units and Recommendations for the Use of their Multiples and of Certain Other Units.
  2. UDUNITS - "The UDUNITS package supports units of physical quantities (e.g., meters, seconds). Specifically, it supports conversion between string and binary representations of units, arithmetic manipulation of units, and conversion of numeric values between compatible units." This "system" doesn't even include, for example, any derived units appropriate for concentration (i.e. quantity of substance per volume or per mass of solution) so it probably cannot be adopted for a marine application, without major further development or expansion. It does contain routines to convert many current and archaic non-SI basic units to SI basic units.
    1. List of Units Supported by UDUNITS (see below for explanation) - From http://www.unidata.ucar.edu/software/udunits/udunits-1/udunits.txt . This "list" includes all kinds of archaic and problematic usages, without clear prioritization
  3. NOTE: The GRIB and BUFR codes (see PARAMETERS) are probably also relevant here, but not central until the ocean and meteorological communities reach general agreements on parameters in general.
  4. ISO 31 in Wikipedia - (Quantities and units, International Organization for Standardization, 1992) is the most widely respected style guide for the use of units of measurement, and formulas involving them, in scientific and educational documents worldwide. In most countries, the notations used in mathematics and science textbooks at schools and universities follow closely the guidelines given by ISO 31.
  5. MMI's List of Units Websites - Semi-comprehensive list of units code


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