The CF conventions define a standard for storing data on (non-staggered) structured grids. For staggered data on structured grids one can use the structured grid conventions with grid definitions for the various stagger locations (this approach is e.g. used by ROMS): the relationship between the stagger locations is lost. For data on unstructured grids, one can store data along a spatial dimension representing a series of points: all topological information is lost in this case.

For the new D-Flow FM (Unstruc) code, we need to define some standard for storing 1D, 2D and 3D unstructured data. Many other international groups are also looking for such standard data storage model for unstructured grid data. The UGRID Interoperability group was created on Google Groups to discuss this issue (see This wiki space contains some information on data model proposals.

Unstructured grid storage concepts

Other unstructured models that use netCDF: