What is BGS linked data?

Linked Data is about using the web to connect related data. Web addresses (URIs) are assigned to real-world things. Data about those things is published in machine-readable formats at the assigned addresses. Other datasets can then point to those things using their URIs, enabling people using the data to find out more about those things without that information being copied into the original dataset.

Linked data allows powerful and easy re-use of data by interconnecting data, putting it in to context and enabling comparisons. By clearly representing the structure and meaning of the data it makes it easier to create applications and visualisations that use it.

The use of linked data is being promoted by data.gov.uk to open up access to government-funded, public data. BGS are publishing its data as linked data to accelerate its exploitation by all potential users. We hope that the release of our data in this format will stimulate new and innovative ways to use our information to help solve some of the environmental problems facing humankind today.

Availability of data

BGS Linked Data is made available free of charge for commercial, research and public use.
Please acknowledge the material.

How our data is stored


All BGS Linked Data will be made available at this base URL.


Contains the RDF XML files for all BGS Concept and Property definitions. Contains a sub-folder for each of our top level concepts.
For example the definitions of "Geochronology Division" or "Lexicon Of Rock Unit" or "ageValue".
View full lists of the Concepts and Properties


RDF XML files for all the individual instances of each iterable concept. Contains a sub-folder for each iterable concept.
For example the data for all 406 "Geochronology Divisions" (Jurassic, Carboniferous ...)
Drill down through the Concepts to find individual data.


Pre-generated alternate file formats for both concepts and properties. Contains a sub-folder for each concept.

Data formats

All our resources are made available in four additional formats as well as RDF\XML.

To specify a particular format you can either use content negotiation (send an HTTP_ACCEPT header prioritising the format you require) or simply by adding the appropriate file extension (.rdf, .html, .json, .nt, .ttl).

  1.  rdf  Resource Description Framework XML [application/rdf+xml]
  2. html  Hypertext Markup Language [text/html]
  3. json  JavaScript Object Notation [application/json]
  4.   nt  N-Triples [text/plain]
  5.  ttl  Terse RDF Triple Language [text/turtle]

You can also download our triple data as N-Triples for importing to your own systems.


{Root} 1 16
{Concepts} 6 49
{Properties} 11 52
EarthMaterialClass/ComponentRank 3 24
EarthMaterialClass/ComponentRelation 33 264
EarthMaterialClass/RockComponent 1,542 13,878
EarthMaterialClass/RockComposite 616 6,160
EarthMaterialClass/RockDummy 6 54
EarthMaterialClass/RockName 2,952 44,280
Total 5,160 64,741
{Root} 1 13
{Concepts} 7 49
{Properties} 10 38
Geochronology/AgeDeterminationType 5 40
Geochronology/Boundary 276 2,484
Geochronology/Division 406 5,278
Geochronology/DivisionList 406 1,218
Geochronology/Rank 10 100
Geochronology/Scheme 7 56
Total 1128 9,276
{Root} 1 7
{Concepts} 14 52
{Properties} 35 147
/Lexicon/Class 11 66
/Lexicon/DefinitionStatus 5 30
/Lexicon/EquivalenceType 2 12
/Lexicon/EquivalentName 7,331 43,986
/Lexicon/LithogeneticType 26 156
/Lexicon/LithologyComponent 22,302 111,510
/Lexicon/NamedRockUnit 12,608 441,280
/Lexicon/RockUnitRank 83 581
/Lexicon/ShapeType 2 12
/Lexicon/SourceInfo 12,901 64,505
/Lexicon/SpatialScope 5 30
/Lexicon/Stratotype 5,534 44,272
/Lexicon/StratotypeType 4 24
/Lexicon/Theme 6 36
Total 60,870 706,716
{Root} 1 10
{Concepts} 4 16
{Properties} 4 14
/625KGeologyMap/Dyke 3,264 48,960
/625KGeologyMap/Fault 2,744 30,184
/625KGeologyMap/Rank 9 36
/625KGeologyMap/Unit 11,245 168,675
Total 17,271 247,895
{Root} 1 4
{Concepts} 0 0
{Properties} 4 16
Total 5 20
All BGS Data
Total 84,434 1,028,648