Just-In-Time Altimetry: International Collaboration in Provision of Altimetry Datasets
Helen Snaith(1) , Remko Scharroo(2) , and Marc Naeije(3)
National Oceanography Centre, Southampton,
254/33 European Way,
Southampton, SO14 3ZH,
(2) NOAA, 1335 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910-3282, United States
(3) TUDelft, Kluyverweg 1, 2629 HS Delft, Netherlands
In order to carry out environmental research, researchers require access to quality controlled, calibrated data. The rapid and repeated release of updated corrections, calibrations and algorithms for satellite altimetry data, results in the most readily available data, i.e. those from standard products, being out of date relative to the best products that could be produced by specialists. Satellite altimeter data are used in a range of environmental research, primarily oceanography but also for studies of ice and land surfaces. These data need to have corrections and calibrations applied from a variety of sources, including tidal models, atmospheric measurements and other instruments such as meteorological buoys. These corrections are available from a number of sites globally and often there are several different options for which correction to use. Users who are not altimeter specialists may not have access to the latest corrections and may be unaware of the latest updates or most appropriate corrections to use for their application. As alternative altimeter data sources are developed to try and overcome some of these problems, it becomes ever more confusing to compare products and select the most appropriate one.
We will present a GRID based methodology to give all users access to the best possible altimeter data product, tailor made for their specific application, using the 'best' corrections available at the time the product is requested. A data portal system would be based on a "Network of Trust" consisting of the data providers and a certificating authority. Requested data products could be produced within this network using the most efficient process, at the time of the request. In addition to authorised data providers, the system would include certified 'experts', authorised to provide recommended correction sets and sources for particular product types: e.g. a calibrated wind speed product or a sea surface height anomaly product suitable to determining large scale ocean circulation. A web 'front-end' to the portal service would allow the user’s full interaction with the portal to select products, formats and delivery method.
This system would build on the experiences gained in combining two existing Altimeter Data services (GAPS and RADS), both with significant numbers of users, to produce a coherent data service with alternative web interfaces and configurable users access.