Thursday, 13 January 2005: 11:00 AM
ACRF data collection and processing infrastructure
Designated as a national user facility, the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility (ACRF) provides a unique asset for the study of global climate change to a broad national and international research community. It has enormous potential to contribute to a wide range of interdisciplinary science in areas such as meteorology, atmospheric aerosols, hydrology, ecology, oceanography, satellite validation, and potential monitoring sites for homeland security. The primary goals for ACRF are to 1) provide infrastructure to the scientific com¬munity for scientific research pertaining to global climate change and the goals of the ARM Program (Ackerman and Stokes, 2003), 2) provide data and information to the scientific community for meeting those goals, and 3) provide education and outreach on the activities and scientific findings that result from ongoing research at the ACRF. The foundation of the ACRF infrastructure is based on the scientific infrastructure created for the ARM Program (DOE, 1990). In support of the ARM Program, the ACRF operates three instrumented sites and a mobile facility to provide relevant atmospheric measure¬ments both to the ARM Program and to the global scientific community. The goal of the ACRF infrastructure is to deliver these measurement data reliably, quickly, and in a useful format to the scientific community. The basic focus of the infrastructure is to get the data generated by instruments in the field to a central distribution point. The remoteness of the sites and the diversity of instruments add to the complexity of the solution. Network access to the sites was often limited and significantly impacted options for data flow and the architecture deployed at each location. Through several iterations and significant work to establish Internet connectivity to each site, the ACRF has developed an efficient and integrated data flow. The network and com¬puting infrastructure is able to centrally process the data from all sites on an hourly basis and make daily updates available for general users. This is accomplished through the use of satellite networking, specialized data movement processes, and a tight configuration management process. This paper presents a description of the data flow from measurement to long-term archive. The data communications infrastructure is also dis¬cussed. The data handling processes presented include collection, transfer, ingest, quality control, creation of Value Added Products, and data archiving.