GLIMS (Global Land Ice Measurements from Space) is a project designed to create a unique glacier inventory storing critical information about the extent and rates of change of the world's estimated 160,000 glaciers.
GLIMS is an international collaborative project that includes more than 60 institutions world-wide: its goal is to create this globally comprehensive inventory of land ice including measurements of glacier area, geometry, surface velocity, and snow line elevation.
To perform these analyses, the GLIMS project uses satellite data, primarily from the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) and the Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) as well as historical information derived from maps and aerial photographs.
The analysis results are submitted to the GLIMS database at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) in Boulder, Colorado.
The GLIMS database is funded through research grants from The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). It is designed to be a logical extension of the World Glacier Inventory (WGI) of the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS) and stores the full complement of the WGMS-defined glacier characteristics.
Each analysis received by the GLIMS team at NSIDC is ingested into the GLIMS Glacier Database and made available to the public via the World Wide Web using an interactive mapping web site based on the open source package MapServer. The web interface thus acts as a visual front-end providing easy access to the GLIMS Glacier Database. New glacier data are continually being added to the database.