The GIS program that simulates habitats,
integrating high quality imagery and analytical tools.


About PHAM

PHAM VectorsThe Pelagic Habitat Analysis Module (PHAM) is a set of software tools designed to assist fisheries managers, scientists, and researchers to examine and predict the habitat for pelagic ocean biota utilising presence/absence or abundance data for the biota combined with environmental datasets such as satellite imagery, bathymetry, survey cruises, and ocean circulation models.

The software has been developed to reside within the Environmental Analysis System (EASy) Geographic Information System (GIS) that is developed by System Science Applications, Inc., specifically for marine applications. The EASy GIS provides a 4 dimensional home for marine data (Latitude, Longitude, Depth, and Time) within its integrated access databases.

In the PHAM project, the GIS is home to both data on the subject marine species as well as any environmental parameters to be investigated in defining the pelagic habitat of that species. Data for the subject species can include fishing fleet catch and effort, electronic and conventional tagging data, fisheries survey data, recreational logbook data, and other forms of data relevant to location and/or abundance of the biota. Environmental data can be imported from various sources including satellite remote sensed data of which more than 50 formats are currently supported in EASy, as well output from ocean circulation models such as the NASA ECCO2 Global Circulation Model, or various implementations of the Regional Ocean Model (ROMS).

The power of PHAM’s capability is the ability to ‘data match’ the biota data with the environmental data by providing user friendly tools to sample the environmental data sets at the location and time of biota data points. This allows a matrix of associated data to be constructed which can be subsequently used for research, statistical analysis, model development, fisheries management, as well as habitat mapping and prediction. PHAM provides tools to assist with all of the above as well as the ability to export data for further analysis in dedicated statistics or other scientific software. Results can then often be re-imported to PHAM for display with the multitude of GIS visualisation tools available with the EASy GIS.

PHAM was developed by a team of scientists, engineers, and software developers from System Science Applications, Inc. the University of Southern California, the University of Sydney, the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, The Inter American Tropical Tuna Commission, and the Coastal Pelagics Division of the NOAA Southwest Fisheries Science Center. This work is funded by a grant from NASA.

For further reading on the development, science, and some applications of PHAM please see the publications page. Further information about the EASy GIS can be found at www.runeasy.com.

About PHAM Lite

PHAM is being developed under a NASA grant which is funded until 2012, so work is only partially complete; however, we have had such an extraordinary response to PHAM so far that we decided to make a version available to the scientific community as soon as possible, hence PHAM Lite. PHAM Lite is a stripped down and simplified version of PHAM. It has been designed to allow users to begin using the most important capabilities of PHAM but without the hassles inherent in software still under development. As additional capabilities in PHAM are fully developed, tested, and documented we will add them to PHAM Lite and release updated versions. In this way we can give fisheries managers and scientists useful tools while we are still busy developing even more capabilities. For more information on PHAM Lite please download the user manual and quickstart guide, and watch for news on new versions in the Users Group section.