In order to work with an SOS, you first need some information about the service. For example, what sensors are connected and what measurement (Phenomena) they deliver, where the sensors are, what objects (Features) are measured by them and which of the SOS-Operations are available for this service.
With the GetCapabilities-request a client can request the self-description of the service with its metadata, containing this and other informations.

The GetCapabilities-request can be sent as a GET- or POST-request to the service.

The mandatory parameters that must be submitted with this request:

  • request - set to "GetCapabilities"
  • version - for this version of the SOS set to "1.0.0"
  • service - set to "SOS"

Optional parameters for this request are:

  • AcceptVersions - This is where the client can specify which SOS-versions are supported by him
  • Section - The document delivered by the service is divided into five sections(see Capabilities ). To avoid unnecessary traffic, you can specify here which of these sections are required and should be supplied by the service.
  • updateSequence
  • AcceptFormats - With this parameter you can provide additional information, the form in which the document can be submitted. Default it is sent as text/xml document, but also compressed files like application/zip are possible.

example GET request:

examples of a POST request :


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<GetCapabilities xmlns="" xmlns:ows="" xmlns:ogc="" service="SOS" version="1.0.0">

or with other attributes

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<GetCapabilities xmlns="" xmlns:ows="" xmlns:ogc="" service="SOS">

The response to a GetCapabilities request is a Capabilities-Dokument

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