Status Report

ISO’s Active Archive Phase 28 Feb 2001

By SpaceRef Editor
February 28, 2001
Filed under ,

An “Active Archive Phase” has been approved by ESA’s Science Programme Committee (SPC) for the ISO Data Centre. This phase will cover the period from January 2002 to December 2006, i.e. immediately following on from the
current “post operations phase”, and will be used to consolidate the success of the mission and to bring the archive
into its final shape. The main thrusts of the active archive phase are to support the community in their use of ISO
data and to capture back into the archive as much as possible of the user knowledge so as to maximize the
long-term value and usability of the archive. Several of the National Data Centres are also seeking funding to
continue their activities into 2002 and beyond.

One of the major keys to success of the active archive phase will be the knowledge, expertise and continuity of the
people involved. The ESA ISO Data Centre at Villafranca has built up a unique set of experience on the archive and
community support together with the detailed expertise on all four instruments that is necessary to support the
general European community. Retention of these core skills and knowledge will continue to enable the community to
get the most out of ISO and will, additionally, build a bridge in ESA’s planning towards future missions, especially

The responsibilities of the ESA ISO Data Centre in the active archive phase can be summarised as maintaining the
central archive and providing expert support to the community across all instruments, via:

    – Archive maintenance and improvements:

    During this phase, the archive will continue to be improved with new data and information being ingested.
    Major tasks will be: stimulating systematic data reduction and capturing the resulting data products into
    the archive; tracking of refereed ISO publications and incorporating this information; ingestion of new ISO
    catalogues and atlases; continuing the process of increasing the inter-operability of archives by linking
    to other data sets; and maintaining the archive, especially the user interface to maximise its usefulness
    and ease of use.

    – Support in data usage:

    The ISO Data Centre will continue to be the first line support to the general community on all matters
    regarding ISO data. This includes provision of advice; support for data reduction either remotely or via
    visits to the centre; and supply of, and assistance with, software for detailed data analysis.

    – Supply of general information

    The existing Helpdesk and WWW services will be continued and updates made as needed to the ISO Handbooks.

    – Promotion of awareness of ISO data:

    General conferences and specific small “hands-on” data reduction workshops will continue to be
    organised with the proceedings being made widely available.

A continuation of the cooperation between the ESA ISO Data Centre and the National Data Centres would be of much
benefit to the final archive and would give added value to the community. The ESA Centre in Villafranca would have
the responsibility for overall co-ordination of the managerially- and financially-independent data centres. Activities of
the National Data Centres involved in the active archive phase would include: maintenance and improvement of
software packages for interactive data reduction, including making available new algorithms and calibration files;
further work on instrument-specific calibration; and focussed reduction of specific data sets to be ingested back into
the archive.

A mid-term review, in front of an independent Board, will be held to review progress and make recommendations on any re-directions of effort.

Martin Kessler,

ISO Project Scientist.

SpaceRef staff editor.