Data Release #1 - Topography


Topography is one of the many variables within the Othersphere Explorer tool used to reveal and diligence optimal siting of sustainable infrastructure projects. To inform this analysis we use licensed data, open data, and novel datasets we have created or augmented. Our topography data is an example of the latter, where we built upon the exceptional work within the Multi-Error-Removed Improved-Terrain Digital Elevation Model (MERIT DEM).


πŸ” Augmented for massive-scale analysis

To make this sophisticated dataset even more accessible, we have introduced tiling to the MERIT DEM. Each tile offers detailed elevation and ruggedness data, enhancing usability for systematic geographical analyses.


πŸš€ Tackling climate must be a group effort

We are excited to release this tiled dataset derived from MERIT DEM, adhering to licensing requirements and aiming to benefit the broader community working on topographical challenges. This data is provided as a parquet file (~4.5GB)Β and is access through Google Cloud Storage. Please click here to learn more about setting up a Google account to access the data and here to learn more about gsutil for downloading files. Alternatively, please contact can we can work with you to determine other file delivery options.




Original data source:

Spatial coverage:





MERIT DEM is a sophisticated dataset that addresses terrain issues common in other mapping efforts. Developed collaboratively by the University of Tokyo Global Hydrology Group, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and Chiba University, it integrates data from established Digital Elevation Models like SRTM and ASTER GDEM and removes elevation discrepancies caused by buildings and vegetation. The application of MERIT DEM is vital in areas such as hydrological modeling, urban planning, and infrastructure development, where precision is crucial.



The data provided herein is made available on an "as-is" basis, without warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied. The provider does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of the information. By downloading this data, the user acknowledges that the provider shall not be held liable for any errors, inaccuracies, or omissions in the data, nor for any damages, losses, or consequences arising from the use, misuse, or reliance on this data. The user assumes full responsibility for the use of the information provided and agrees to use it with caution and at their own risk.

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πŸ” The challenge

Equipment sizing and operating strategy LCOH optimizations for hydrogen electrolysis plants are cumbersome and time-consuming. It can take days to weeks to get the data, with each optimization run often taking hours. This limits analytical efforts to a handful of potential sites, leaving many opportunities unexplored.

The result β€” sub-optimal capital allocation and higher risks, with countless missed opportunities.The difference between initial cost calculations versus hourly optimizations can be dramatic, and highlights location as a critical element of project success.


πŸ›  Our solution

Othersphere has revolutionized this process by combining the power of our underlying spatial economics platform with neural networks for dimensionality reduction and surrogate modeling.

Our global search engine now recommends pre-optimized projects in seconds, having already run an hourly optimization considering:

1) Hourly day-ahead wholesale power market pricing

2) Grid upgrade CAPEX (developed with a global leader in grid transmission engineering and equipment)

3) Grid fees associated with transmission connections

4) Variable stack efficiency by load, incorporating operational ranges

5) System economies of scale, as well as commercial and technical nuances between PEM and alkaline plants

6) Hourly carbon intensity data

7) Demand profiles and cost of storage

8) Co-located renewables CAPEX

9) High-spatial resolution hourly solar and wind capacity factor data

All of this is delivered through the Othersphere Explorer tool, which provides a novel, bottom-up view of potential hydrogen projects, evaluating key factors such as production costs, emissions, available offtakers, and fit with local surroundings.

Othersphere Explorer 101 - System optimization for electrolysis

Introducing the world’s first global optimizer for hydrogen projects


Ensuring sufficient market demand is essential for any infrastructure project, and hydrogen is no different.

But a key challenge facing project developers today is finding and engaging offtakers for lower GHG hydrogen, especially those willing to sign long-term offtake agreements.

At Othersphere, we're focused on simplifying this complex challenge. Our Othersphere Explorer tool is designed to empower developers by providing instant assessments of potential offtakers accessible from any project site around the globe, and how competitive various hydrogen production technologies will be in serving them.


🌍 Today

Our tool currently models delivered prices to over 8,000 industrial facilities, including refineries, ammonia plants, methanol plants, ports, and steel mills (yellow points).


πŸš€ In progress

We are currently adding fueling stations and airports (white points), adding over half a million emerging hydrogen demand locations.


πŸ” Future

We have a number of other offtaker types queued up for integration, and so please reach out if you have suggestions or simply want to learn about how we source and process this complex data.


🀝 Collaboration

If you're a project developer or offtaker navigating these challenges, we're here to help. Please reach out to or schedule a demo to learn more.

Othersphere Explorer 101 - Offtakers

Ensuring sufficient market demand is essential for any infrastructure project, and hydrogen is no different. But a key challenge facing project developers today is finding and engaging offtakers for lower GHG hydrogen, especially those willing to sign long-term offtake agreements.


Get in touch

Please reach out if you would like to learn more about Othersphere, our products, and opportunities to partner in accelerating global industrial decarbonization.

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