Maps

ICES statistical rectangles

ICES statistical rectangles are used for the gridding of data to make simplified analysis and visualization

​ICES statistical rectangles have been in use since the 1970's, and were first officially referenced in CM document 1977/Gen:3 document 'ICES Statistical Rectangle Coding System'.

ICES statistical rectangles provide a grid covering the area between 36°N and 85°30'N and 44°W and 68°30'E.

Latitudinal rows, with intervals of 30', are numbered (two-digits) from 01 at the southern boundary (latitude 36°00'N) and increasing northwards to 99. The northern boundary of the statistical rectangle system is, thus, latitude 85°30'N.

Longitudinal columns, with intervals of 1°, are coded according to an alphanumeric system, beginning with A0 at the western boundary (longitude 44°00'W), continuing A1, A2, A3 to longitude 40°W. East of 40°W, the coding continues B0, B1, B2, ..., B9, C0, C1, C2, ..., C9, etc., using a different letter for each 10° block, to the eastern boundary of the area covered. Note that the letter I is omitted. Thus:

Longitudinal column
of ICES rectangle
Coordinates
​A​44°W-40°W
​B​40°W-30°W
​C​30°W-20°W
​D​20°W-10°W
​E​10°W-00°
​F​00°-10°E
​G​10°E-20°E
​H​20°E-30°E
​J​30°E-40°E
​K​40°E-50°E
​L​50°E-60°E
​M​60°E-68°30'E(M8)

 

When designating an ICES rectangle, the northern coordinate is stated first. Thus, the rectangle of which the south-west corner is 54°00'N 03°00'E is designated 37F3.

Usually, it is necessary to specify an area with more precision than is possible with a statistical rectangle designation. Therefore, a sub-rectangle designation must be given (as a fifth character) by dividing a statistical rectangle into nine (10' latitude x 20' longitude) sub-divisions, as follows:

​1​4​7
​2​5​8
​3​6​9

 

For example:

A location 58°12'N 10°33'E would lie within ICES rectangle/sub-division 45G05

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ICES statistical rectangles

International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) · Conseil International pour l'Exploration de la Mer (CIEM)
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