49 The National Ecological Observatory Network's Automated Terrestrial Measurements: Data Flow and Quality Control Approaches

Wednesday, 30 May 2012
Rooftop Ballroom (Omni Parker House)
Jeffrey R. Taylor, National Ecological Observatory Network, Boulder, CO; and H. Luo, E. Ayres, S. Metzger, S. Berukoff, and H. Loescher

Handout (854.8 kB)

The National Ecological Observatory Network's Fundamental Instrument Unit (NEON-FIU) is responsible for making automated terrestrial observations at 60 different sites across the continent. FIU will provide data on key local physical, climate and chemical forcings, as well as the biotic responses (CO2, H2O and energy exchanges). The sheer volume of data that will be generated far exceeds that of any other ecological network or agency, (i.e., > 45 Tb/year from 10's of thousands of remotely deployed sensors). We address the question of how to develop and implement a large ecological observatory that can accommodate such a large volume of data while maintaining high quality. Here, we describe our quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) program to produce quality data while leveraging cyber infrastructure tools and optimizing technician time.

Results focus on novel approaches that advance the principles and dataflows used historically (DOE ARM, AmeriFlux, USDA ARS, OK Mesonet) to new state-of-the-art functionality. These automated and semi-automated approaches are also used to inform automated problem tracking to efficiently deploy field staff. Ultimately, NEON will define its own standards for QA/QC and maintenance by building upon these existing frameworks. The overarching philosophy relies on attaining the highest levels of accuracy, precision, and operational time, while efficiently optimizing the effort needed to produce quality data products. Our preliminary results address the challenges associated with automated implementation of sensor command/control, plausibility testing, despiking, and data verification of FIU observations.

Supplementary URL: www.neoninc.org

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