There are essentially three steps to submitting data to the ISTP Central
Data Handling Facility (CDHF). We describe each of the steps in some
detail below or on subsequent pages and give contact names/emails to
help smooth the process.
contact: Bill Mish, "email@example.com" or
High-resolution ("event") digital data is being
solicited from every ISTP investigation, and other related space physics
missions and observatories.
Data values should be in physical / geophysical units, fully processed
with the latest available algorithms and calibrations. The data
submitted should be suitable in quality and resolution for primary
research studies, representative of the true, useful resolution of your
instrument both in time and in other parameters of your measurements as
appropriate (i.e. spatial, frequency, energy, angle etc.). Images
should be at the best available time and angular resolution, plasma
measurements should include full distribution functions as well as
moments, particle data should include multiple species over a full set
of energy and pitch angle bands, wave distributions should be at the
best useful frequency resolution. High-resolution data from ground
investigations is requested. Contribution of appropriate and applicable
theory products is strongly encouraged.
Experiments producing Key Parameter Data should use the existing Global
Despcriptions with the exception that the data type will now be
H0>High Resolution Data.
Those with new experiments proposing to submit data should read the
remaining information in this section.
High Resolution Data was described above.
Key Parameter files are in almost all cases submitted as
It will be important to discuss the proposed frequency of transmissions
as well as the approximate volume of the files.
- daily files
- with one instrument per file
- at approximately one minute resolution.
The following values must be agreed before
submission in order to ensure uniqueness of the data sets.
This information is required for the CDHF data base as well as NSSDC's
data base and is also found in the data file (CDF) and the detached
header file (SFDU).
- Source_name: need a 2-character code plus a longer,
descriptive name, e.g.,
- Geotail - GE - Geomagnetic Tail Laboratory
- Wind - WI - Wind Interplanetary Plasma Laboratory
- SAMPEX - SX - Solar Anomalous Magnetospheric
- MSX - MX - Midcourse Space eXperiment
- DARN - DN - Dual Auroral Radar Network
- Data_type: need a 2-character code plus a longer
name. ISTP allows 10 possible data sets to be submitted per instrument
for each data type. Key Parameters have been the most widely submitted
data type (using the single character K), though higher resolution data
(using the single character H) has also been used. Along with the single
character above, a number 0-9 to identify the particular data set is
also used to define the Data_type, e.g.,
- K0 - Key Parameters
- K1 - Key Parameters
- H0 - High Resolution Data
- H1 - High Resolution Data
- Descriptor: need a 3 or 4-character code plus a
longer, descriptive name, e.g.,
- LEP - Low Energy Particle Experiment
- MFI - Magnetic Field Instrument
- WAV - Radio and Plasma Waves
- GBAY - Goose Bay Station
- Discipline>Subdiscipline: you can choose from the
- Space Physics>Magnetospheric Science
- Interplanetary Studies
- Ionospheric Science
- Solar Physics>Gamma-Ray Observations
- Infrared Observations
- Radio Observations
- Ultraviolet Observations
- Microwave Observations
- Visible Observations
- X-Ray Observations
Files are named according to the short character codes, built from the
Source_name, Data_type, Descriptor, the date of the data (4 digit year,
2 digit month, 2 digit day) and the version number of the file (in case
of re-processing some files are produced more than one time!). For
example, a file name might look like
GE_K0_LEP_19950215_V01.cdf or WI_H0_MFI_19960425_V02.cdf.
contact: Mona Kessel, "firstname.lastname@example.org", (301)286-6595.
2 Products are sent to the CDHF:
All of the necessary information and tools are available from the Space
Physics Use of CDF web page with important aspects repeated below
for your convenience.
- data in the Common Data Format (CDF) using the ISTP/IACG
- detached SFDU header file
You will need to obtain the CDF software
You will need specific, detailed guidance on creat
ing ISTP/IACG CDF files, especially:
An intermediate result of this is a CDF "skeleton table" , a
specially formatted ASCII text file that contains the
information about the data set. The format of the file allows
simultaneous viewing and editing of the information (note: the skeleton
table syntax must be followed exactly).
Instrument-Specific Skeleton Tables are available, and can then be
edited to match your data.
- How to structure data
- What Descriptions to include
Skeleton Tables must be validated before submission
of the data. Send your prototype to
KPGSIT@istp1.gsfc.nasa.gov. A report with comments will be returned to
you. This is usually an iterative process. You will also receive an ADID
number at this time.
The CDF Skeleton is a file
similar to the skeleton table in that it only contains information, but
its format is binary. The CDF skeleton is created using the CDF
toolkit routine called CDFskeleton. (This is also a check that in
editing the skeleton table the syntax was preserved. If not, an error
message appears on the screen pointing to the first error detected.) You
can write your own Fortran or C program to put data into the CDF
Skeleton (see the Tutoria
l) or use the program makeCDF.
Software is available for creating SFDU header files from an existing
ISTP/IACG CDF file: see makeSFDU.
contact: Program Assistance Center (PAC), "email@example.com",
You will need to apply for a CDHF account in order to transfer files.
Click here to open a telnet session and APPLY for your account.
Then enter a username of "APPLY" and follow the directions.
The PAC will be your resource on the CDHF end to ensure that the
transmissions flow smoothly.
Please provide the PAC with a name/email address on
your end to serve as the main contact. All acknowledgements
and/or problem reports will go to this main contact.
- FTP of files will be to a general location specified by the
PAC (with essentially unlimited quota). You will need to log on to your
cdhf account at the beginning of the FTP session to provide the
authority for the transfer.
- Send a test CDF and SFDU pair of files and alert the PAC
when they are in place.
- The PAC will acknowledge success or problems with the
- Once successful, you can start routinely FTPing files as
they are produced.
- An email message will be sent to the address you supplied
acknowledging receipt of data.
- The PAC will monitor transmissions and let you know of any
Authors and Curators
Code 632, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Greenbelt, MD 20771, USA
Authorized by R.E. McGuire, Head, Space Physics Data Facility
(Code 632, NASA/GSFC), Robert.E.McGuire@gsfc.nasa.gov, (301)286-7794
Last Updated: 22 Feb 1996, KCH