Navigation Data Standard in 2020 ?

Navigation data standard

Navigation Data Standard ( NDS ; German navigation data standard ) is a standardized format for map databases in navigation systems , developed on the basis of quality requirements of the automotive industry jointly by automotive manufacturers and suppliers. Version 2.5.3 of March 13, 2018 [1] is current . The registered association NDS eV is responsible for the development. Members of the association are automobile manufacturers , providers of geodata and manufacturers of navigation systems . [2] [3]

The goal of NDS development is a standardized binary database format that enables the exchange of map data between different navigation systems. Map data and navigation software are separated in NDS, so that various navigation products for end users can be developed on the basis of NDS. In addition to this interoperability, NDS supports incremental updates, digital rights management and is extremely compact. [4]

NDS-based navigation products have been on the market since 2012, including from BMW , Daimler and Volkswagen


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The goal of NDS is to develop a leading global industry standard that meets the quality requirements of the automotive industry. The format should:

Find a wide range of applications in the navigation industry and are used by leading manufacturers of navigation systems
Can be used interoperably for different systems
Support map updates
Can be used worldwide
Meet the specific requirements of different countries
The quality requirements of the automotive industry include that:

NDS is developed jointly by leading automobile manufacturers and suppliers.
NDS supports all automotive industry use cases for card data.
NDS supports advanced navigation technologies such as eHorizon, autonomous driving and cloud applications.
The extensive application and the implementation in different systems ensure that the standard is continuously checked and developed.
To achieve this goal, NDS has set the following goals:

Ensure rapid integration of extensions and changes to the standard
Ensure ease of use and efficient implementation of the standard to promote global use in automotive applications
Ensure legal protection for the use of NDS
Offer certification of navigation databases for NDS compliance
To promote acceptance of the standard, NDS supports development projects that use NDS, including tools and technical consulting. In addition, the standard is constantly being technically developed and new members are being recruited for the standardization consortium.

NDS architecture

NDS uses the SQLite database format . An NDS database can consist of several product databases, which in turn can be divided into individual update regions. This structure enables flexible but consistent updates and the integration of databases from different manufacturers into a common NDS database.

Within a product database there are functional modules (building block), levels (layers) and the geodata itself. Map data is organized in adjacent tiles. A magnification level, the level, decides the edge length of a tile. In level 0, a tile covers half the earth (east or west of Greenwich). From one level to the next higher, the geographic edge length of the tile is practically halved, i.e. the area shown is quartered. More precisely, the length and width angles of the tile are halved from one level to the next. For example, in level 13 a tile covers approx. 2.4 * 2.4 km. WGS84 is used as the card system.

Product database
An NDS product database is supplied by a specific manufacturer and has its own version control. This means that it can be updated independently of other product databases. There are one or more functional modules within a product database, e.g. B. Data for route calculation or map display. A product database covers a specific geographic area, which can be divided into individual update regions. Example for a product database: “Europa Basisnavigation” by TomTom [7] .

Update region
An update region represents a geographic area within a product database, whose geodata can be updated independently of other regions. The concept of the update regions thus enables incremental and partial updates of defined geographical areas within an NDS database. Example: Within the “Europe Basic Navigation” product, each European country is modeled by its own update region.

Functional Modules

Functional modules in NDS format
All geodata within an NDS database belong to a specific functional module. Each module covers certain functions, e.g. B. Names for entering the destination, route calculation, map display, etc. In order for certain tasks of a navigation system to be fulfilled, the navigation software must summarize and evaluate data from different modules. So z. B. for the calculation and display of a route data from the modules for route calculation and map display can be summarized.

An update region can contain several functional modules. Therefore, there can be multiple instances of the same module in a product database with multiple update regions. Example: In a European database there is a module of the “Basic Map Display” type for the update region France and a module of the type “Basic Map Display” for the update region Germany.

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