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New Spatial Data Types



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New Spatial Data Types

Applies: SQL Server 2008 (Katmai) CTP November 2007, SQL Server 2008 Enterprise Edition

SQL Server 2008 will be the first version of SQL Server to support spatial data and spatial operations natively. SQL Server 2008 introduces the geometry and the geography data types for storing spatial data. Geometry is a planar spatial data type, while geography represents data in a round-earth coordinate system (ellipsoidal) like latitude and longitude coordinates. Both data types are implemented as .NET CLR (Common Language Runtime) data types in Microsoft SQL Server 2008.

The geometry data type is based on the OGC (Open Geospatial Consortium) standards and supports the standard methods on geometry instances. Meanwhile, the geography data type uses coordinate system known as WGS 84 which is used by most GPS systems.

The geometry and geography data types support the following seven instantiable spatial data objects: Point, MultiPoint, LineString, MultiLineString, Polygon, MultiPolygon and GeometryCollection.

Microsoft SQL Server 2008 will introduce approximately 70 methods or functions to support operations with these two new data types.

The benefits of these new spatial data types are:

bullet Spatial data types will allow to build location-enabled applications and services. So expect to see many interesting location-aware products in the near future using SQL Server spatial data types.
bullet Both spatial data types will benefit from the new spatial indexes providing high-performance queries.
bullet Extensibility through geospatial services such as Microsoft Virtual Earth.

The following example defines a point using the geography data type with coordinates of (18.25, 69.40) representing latitude and longitude for the SDQ Airport at Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.



Finally, another example, this time using the geometry data type to represent a polygon.




Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Spatial Data Types

The Data Plaftorm Insider

SQL Server 2008 Books Online



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