South American Low-Level Jet Experiment (SALLJEX)

Data Management Plan

December 2002

Compiled by:

University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR)
Joint Office for Science Support (JOSS)
P.O. Box 3000
Boulder, Colorado 80307 USA


  • 1. Introduction/Background

    The SALLJEX (South American Low-Level Jet Experiment program) is described in the SALLJEX science and implementation plan (Paegle et al., 2000 Investigators associated with CLIVAR's international program on Variability of American Monsoon Systems (VAMOS) will participate in SALLJEX, with additional focus on coastal ocean-atmosphere-land interactions and continental Mesoscale Convective Systems.

    The SALLJEX Field Phase plans to use one research aircraft, a NOAA WP-3D; a number of supplemental radiosonde sites, and part of the enhanced monitoring upper-air network (PIBALs) sponsored by the NOAA/OGP Pan American Climate Studies (PACS) program. The aircraft will be based at Viru Viru Airport in Santa Crúz de la Sierra, Bolivia (17.8° S, 63.2° W), the location of the SALLJEX Operations Center. The P-3 will be used to study low-level jet current along the eastern slopes of the Andes; as well as mesoscale convective system along the exit region of the jet.

    Further information about SALLJEX can be found on the web page located at:

    1.1 Data Management Philosophy

    The development and maintenance of a comprehensive and accurate data archive is a critical step in meeting the scientific objectives of SALLJEX. The overall guiding philosophy for SALLJEX data management is to make the completed data set available to the world scientific community as soon as possible following the field campaign.

    The SALLJEX data will be available to the scientific community through a distributed archive coordinated by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)  Earth Observing Laboratory (NCAR/EOL), in Boulder Colorado, USA. JOSS will oversee the SALLJEX data management tasks in collaboration with the SALLJEX Science Working Group. This SALLJEX Data Management Plan describes the guiding data management policies (Section 2), the strategy and functional description of the data management systems (Section 3.0), and the implementation details of the SALLJEX data sets and the data management systems (Section 4.0). Detailed information regarding the SALLJEX Research and Operational data sets are provided in Appendix A and B, respectively.

    The SALLJEX data management archive activities fall into two major areas:

    1.- Development and implementation of a real-time data catalog to provide in-field support and project summaries / updates for the Principal Investigators (PIs) and insure optimum data collection; and   2.- Establishment of a coordinated final archive system and providing data distribution / support for the investigators and the CLIVAR / VAMOS scientific community.     General guidance has been provided by the SALLJEX Science Working Group (see Section 2). The EOL has primary responsibility for the in-field collection, compilation and access to all supporting operational data (see Section 4.x) for the SALLJEX Field Phase. The EOL Data Services may also quality control and reformat select operational data (e.g. soundings) prior to access by the community (see Section 3). EOL/CDS will be responsible for coordinating and archiving other research data that were collected, processed and quality controlled by the SALLJEX investigators (see Section 4xx).

    2. SALLJEX Data Management Policy 

    The following data protocol and management issues were discussed and agreed to by the SALLJEX Science Working Group. This data management strategy (i.e. protocol, schedule, data submission, and distribution) form the basis of the SALLJEX data management policy discussed in this chapter and expanded in subsequent sections of this document.


    The South American low-level jet (SALLJEX) program, component of the WCRP/CLIVAR/VAMOS program, is an internationally coordinated effort to contribute to the understanding of the role of the SALLJ in moisture and energy exchange between the tropics and extratropics and related aspects of regional hydrology, climate and climate variability. The ultimate goal of SALLJ is to improve short and long term predictions through the following strategy:
        The time periods for which data will be archived will cover the period 1 November 2002- 28 February 2003. SALLJEX data will be provided from a variety of field activities lead by researchers and group of researchers, which have already received specific funding to support their activities. Henceforth, these will be referred to as data providers or SALLJEX participants. The archiving of SALLJEX data set will be done into one of the distributed SALLJEX Data Archive centers (SDA) . Creating harmonized data formats at SDA is an essential element of the SALLJEX data policy in order to provide easy access to the data by the scientific community. The latter will be referred to as data users in the following data release guidelines.

        Performing high-quality measurements during the planned SALLJEX period, carrying out quality and error checking procedures, and submitting data and related documentation to the SDA will require substantial financial and logistical efforts of the data providers. The necessary support for these activities originates from a variety of international, national and institutional sources.

        This policy was approved at the SALLJEX coordination meeting held 24 to 26 July 2002 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    2.1.1 SALLJEX Data Categories
        In order to set up data release guidelines which balance the interests of both data users and data providers; it was considered useful to divide SALLJEX data into the following two categories:

            Category 1: Standard data. (e.g. operative rawinsondes, surface standard meteorology)

    Low or common exploitation value, measurement technology common, generally well understood little or no problems with data interpretation.

            Category 2: Enhanced or Experimental data. (e.g. SALLJEX rawinsondes, pibal balloon and aircraft data, radar data) High exploitation value, measurement technology sophisticated and/or of experimental nature, contacts to data providers recommended for correct interpretation of data, high efforts necessary to maintain continuous measurements and high quality of data. These data will be taken for specific research purposes and maintained by a specific research group and/or the station or instrument PI.


    2.2.1 Release of Data in Compliance with WMO Resolution 40 (CG-XII) and WMO Resolution 25 (CG-XIII)
        SALLJEX was initiated by VAMOS/CLIVAR/WCRP, whose co-sponsor is WMO, as an international project. It is thus appropriate that any policy for release and dissemination of SALLJEX data should principally comply with the WMO policy, practice and guidelines for the exchange of meteorological, hydrological, and related data and products, as embodied in Resolution 40 of the Twelfth WMO Congress 1995 (CG-XII), and Resolution 25 of the Thirteenth WMO Congress 1999 (CG-XIII); that is, free and unrestricted exchange of essential data and products.
        The no-restriction principle shall in particular mean that no financial implications are involved for the SALLJEX data exchange. SALLJEX data files available through one of the SDA shall be offered free of charge to the data users.

    2.2.2 No Commercial Use or Exploitation
        It is understood that all SALLJEX data shall be delivered to users only for scientific studies designed to meet SALLJEX-WCRP objectives. Commercial use and exploitation by either the data users nor the SDA is prohibited, unless specific permission has been obtained from the SALLJEX investigators concerned in writing.

    2.2.3 No Data Transfer to Third Parties
        One restriction, which will be imposed on all data users, concerns the re-export or transfer of the original data (as received from the archive) to a third party. Such restriction shall apply to all categories of SALLJEX data, and is in the best interests of both the SALLJEX investigators and the potential users.
        Unrestricted copying of the original data by multiple, independent users may lead to errors in the data and loss of identity of its SALLJEX-SDA origin and is strictly prohibited.
        SDA will offer SALLJEX data files to potential data users through electronic means, (e.g. the Internet) or other designated media (e.g. CD ROMs). The SDA shall install technical means to keep protocol on all data transfers to data users thus maintaining a catalogue of all data users, and the data files they have obtained.

    2.2.4 Timing for Release of SALLJEX Data from SDA

        The timing issue clearly involves some conflicting aspects. The data user will obviously be interested in obtaining data as soon as possible after the time of measurement. The data providers, as well as the SDA, will wish to ensure the highest attainable quality of the data. The latter will generally be time consuming, particularly in view of the shortage of manpower in many cases.

    In addition, the data providers may have for good reasons an interest to exploit the respective data, or part of it, for his/her own scientific interest, or for another funded project or experiment, before these data are made openly available to a larger community.
        Ideally, data should be ready for general release after some specific period following its acquisition, during which the exchange process between the data provider, the SDA and also the other data providers, including quality control and assurance, will have been completed. Six months has been considered as the appropriate length for this data turn-around period.
        All data taken for SALLJEX, shall be categorized into standard (category 1) and enhanced or experimental (category 2) data. See section 2.1.1 above for definition of these categories. Standard data shall be freely open to the science community after the basic turn-around period of six months.     Enhanced or experimental data shall be freely open to the science community after a prolonged turn-around period of 15 months at maximum.
        Each data providers will be responsible to divide data provided to the SALLJEX- SDA into the mentioned category scheme (Section 2.1.1). In cases of conflict, it is the data provider who decides on the category of specific data at the respective site.

        It shall be possible in special cases for a potential data user to establish direct contact to a data provider in order to agree on exceptions (i.e. shortenings of the turn-around period) to these rules for specific data or data periods. It is suggested that these communications shall be performed with co-ordination of the SDA.

    2.2.5 Acknowledgement and Citation
        Whenever SALLJEX data distributed by SDA are being used for publication of scientific results, the data's origin must be acknowledged and referenced. A minimum requirement is to reference SALLJEX and the SDA. If only data from one specific source of SALLJEX data (or a limited number of them) has been used, additional acknowledgement to the data provider and its (their) institutions or organizations shall be given.
        Maintaining continuous, high-quality measurements, performing quality and error checking procedures, and submitting data and related documentation to the SDA will require substantial financial and logistical efforts of the SALLJEX investigators.
        The SDA shall make proper reference to all data providers and, if required, to their funding sources.

    2.2.6 Co-Authorship for Principal Investigators (PIs)
        Co-authorship of SALLJEX participants on published papers making extensive use of SALLJEX data is justifiable and highly recommended, in particular, if a PI has responded to questions raised about the data's quality and/or suitability for the specific study in question, or has been involved in directly contributing to the paper in other ways. It is highly recommended that any data user should contact the responsible PI and ask him/her if he/she wants to become co- author, or if an acknowledgement (see section 2.5) would be sufficient. If co-authorship is requested, the PI and the data user should establish a basis for collaboration. A PI in this context means the responsible site or instrument scientist or any person (student, collaborator) that he/she may suggest.
        Data users of SALLJEX data are encouraged to establish direct contact with PIs and SALLJEX investigators for the purpose of complete interpretation and analysis of data for publication purposes. This is in particular recommended for category 2 data.

    2.2.7 SALLJEX Publication Library
        Whenever SALLJEX data distributed by SDA are being used for publication of scientific results, the author(s) shall sent a copy of the respective publication, preferably in electronic form, to the SALLJEX Project Office in order to build up a SALLJEX publication library. The Project Office will maintain this library and will make it public, for example via the SALLJEX website, for a continuous monitoring of the SALLJEX data applications and SALLJEX's achievements in general.

    2.4. SALLJEX Data Management Functional Description and Strategy
    The general approach to data management support for SALLJEX is summarized in a data flow diagram (see Fig. 1). It is important that the SALLJEX data management strategy be responsive to the needs of the investigators, assuring that data are accurate and disseminated in a timely fashion. It is also important that the investigators know what is expected of them in this process. A time line of critical dates in the sequence of SALLJEX data management tasks are included in Fig. 2. After a description of the Data Archive Center (Section 3.1), each step in the SALLJEX data management process is discussed in more detail.

    3.1 Data Archive Center 

    The SALLJEX data will be available to the scientific community through a designated SALLJEX Data Archive Center located at UCAR/JOSS, Boulder, Colorado, USA. All data sets collected for SALLJEX will be available through the existing interactive EOL Data Management System (EMDAC). EMDAC offers scientists access to research and operational data. It provides the means to identify data sets of interest, facilities to view data and associated metadata, and the ability to automatically obtain data via internet file transfer or magnetic media. The user may browse data to preview selected data sets prior to retrieval. Data displays include time series plots for surface parameters, thermodynamic diagrams for soundings, and GIF images for model analysis products and satellite imagery. CODIAC users can directly retrieve data. They can download data via Internet directly to their workstation or personal computer or request delivery of data on magnetic media. Data may be selected by time or location and can be converted to one of several formats before delivery. EMDAC automatically includes associated documentation concerning the data itself, processing steps, and quality control procedures.

    Contact Information:

        Contact: EMDAC ( ).

        Mailing Address: P.O. Box 3000, Boulder, CO, USA, 80307

        Shipping Address: 3450 Mitchell Lane (Suite 2000),    Boulder, Colorado, USA, 80307

        Telephone: (303) 497-8168 [FAX (303) 497-2044]

        Internet Access:

    3.2 Data Processing

    3.3 Data Catalog

    NCAR Earth Observing Laboratory (NCAR/EOL) has developed the capability of maintaining a web-based field catalog. The on-line catalog capability allows investigators limited perusal and display of preliminary data products during the field phase. The catalog will also provide in-field documentation of project activities (daily or otherwise as required) and summarize data collection. The field data catalog will provide access to daily operations summaries at the Santa Crúz Operations Center, as well other remote sites.

    The SALLJEX field catalog can be reached at .

    4.-     SALLJEX Datasets

    4.1 Data Collection

    4.1.1 Operational Datasets

    Processing and preparation of precipitation datasets will be the responsibility of the individual countries. Digital datasets and reformatting of files will be the responsibility of CIMA at the University of Buenos Aires. The final archive will be delivered to SALLJEX data center (EOL/CDS) for distribution.

    Satellite data will be ingested and archived at EOL and at the Centro de Previsão de Tempo e Estudos Climáticos (CPTEC) , Brazil. A browsable GIF image archive will be available at the SALLJEX Data Center, as well as raw binary files collected from either ingest ground station location.

    Surface and uper-air data that are routinely transmitted via GTS will be captured and archived at EOL.

    4.1.2 Research Datasets

    Research-quality radiosonde data of the highest resolution available will be processed and quality checked by the NCAR/EOL. This will include operational National Weather Service sites and supplemental SALLJEX sites.

    Pilot balloon data will be processed at the National Severe Storms Laboratory. The NSSL has maintained an enhanced monitoring network of pilot balloon observations since 1997. Final datasets will be sent to the archive data center for distribution.

    Data from the NOAA research aircraft will be distributed at EOL. The EOL will be responsible for the flight level datasets and the NSSL will process any airborne radar data collected during the experiment. Static images of airborne radar composites will be will also be available at the data center.

    4.2 Status Update Requirements and Procedures

    Communications with remote sites will be via telephone, facsimile or electronic mail. Receipt of preliminary data from these sites will be also be accomplished in a similar manner, as operations needs dictate.

    4.3 Coordination with other countries

    Participanting countries will have a primary contact responsible for coordination of SALLJEX resources in that country.

    CIMA-Univ Bns Ars
    Univ São Paolo
    Univ de Chile

    5.0 SALLJEX Field Operations Center

    The primary function of the Field Operations Center is to support the activities of the SWG and other participating scientists in meeting the scientific objectives of SALJJEX. To accomplish the required tasks, the Field Operations Center will conduct daily meetings, at a time specified by the SWG, to review the present and extended forecasts, monitor all aspects of the experiment, facilitate the coordination of the activities of the participants, ensure adequate communications among the SWG and research platforms, including particpants in other countries, and maintain a data catalog during the field phase.

    5.1 Facilities and Staff 

    The venue of the Operations Center is the 3rd Floor Conference Rooms at the Buganvillas Hotel, Santa Crúz de la Sierra, Bolivia.

    JOSS will install at the a local area network (LAN) and telecommunications capabilities of adequate bandwidth to support the activities of the participants at the Operations Center. There will be an area for meetings and forecast briefings and the daily mission selection process; as well as an area for the Mission Director, the Operations Director and his staff to execute the operational and logistical responsibilities during any science mission.

    5.2 Internet Connectivity

    The primary connection to the Internet will be a 1.024MB-per-second link. Within the Operations Center will be a LAN composed of a combination of 10-megabit-per-second and 100 megabit per second Ethernet, with standard RJ-45 twisted-pair connectors. The standard connection provided to SALLJEX participants will be 10baseT. Participants requiring 10base2 (ThinNet) connections should contact the JOSS systems administrator, Mark Bradford ( ) to make special arrangements.

    The supported network protocol family will be TCP/IP. IP addresses and TCP/IP configurations will be assigned to participants' computers dynamically, via DHCP. If a participant's computer does not support DHCP, or if it is required that a particular computer have a constant numeric address, the PI must contact the Mark Bradford who will assign a static configuration.

    Due to the possible modest bandwidth of the Internet connection, a limited amount of network traffic will be permitted over this link. The highest priorities will be given to data critical for the SALLJEX mission and to electronic mail. The size of e-mail messages may be limited to XX megabyte. Interactive login sessions might not be permitted except in special circumstances after coordination with the JOSS Network Administrator, Mark Bradford, (