Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Version 10

ESDS Term Definition, Context, or Usage (within ESDS) Example or Source (of definition, context, or usage)
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Active Archive A data archive in which the data being collected are still being actively updated; it may grow with time, or still be undergoing calibration. As such, identifiers to data may not point to a specific edition, so they do not qualify as an archive to the library community. They may collect data from a single team or investigation (instrument archive), or from all of the investigations from a larger project (mission archive; project archive). Definition from Vocabulary for Virtual Observatories and Data Systems; Hourclé, J.A. and King, T.A. (pdf)
Algorithm A formula or set of steps used, sometimes repetitively, to solve a problem. Algorithms implemented as software are delivered to the SDPS by a science investigator (principal investigator, team leader, or Interdisciplinary Investigator) to use as primary tools in the generation of science products. The term includes executable code, source code, job control scripts, and documentation. 423-MOU-001 NASA NPP Science Data Segment (SDS) Instrument Calibration and Support Element (NICSE) and Land Product Evaluation and Analysis Tool Element (PEATE) NPP Software and Data Distribution Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Algorithm Theoretical Basis Document (ATBD) ATBDs are developed for EOS instrument products, although some ATBDs address more than one product, and some products are addressed by more than one ATBD. ATBDs typically provide the theoretical basis, both the physical theory and the mathematical procedures and possible assumptions being applied, for the calculations that have to be made to convert the radiances received by the instruments to geophysical quantities. The geophysical quantities are then available to the scientific community for studies of the various characteristics of the Earth system. Definition from NASA Earth Observing System Project Science Office
Ancillary Data Data other than instrument data required to perform an instrument’s data processing. This includes orbit data, attitude data, time information, spacecraft engineering data, calibration data, data quality information, and data from other instruments. Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Application Programmer Interfaces Software applications, such as spreadsheets or word processing, use a special language and message format -- the API -- to communicate with the computer operating system, database management system or other system programs. Software system vendors provide APIs so that their customers can use various applications directly from their desktops. Development and use of standard APIs safeguards business-critical data. EOSDIS Services
Definition from IBM Security Solutions glossary
Archived Holdings All EOS and non-EOS data and data products, as well as supporting information, that are archived by EOSDIS. This includes models, algorithms, documentation, and level 0 data or higher level data products from which level 0 may be recovered. Definition from the PO.DAAC glossary
Attributes A metadata table, Attributes for ICESat Laser Operations Periods (BORG Table), provided by the ICESat Science Investigator-led Processing System (I-SIPS), was created in an effort to better educate ICESat/GLAS users on the vertical and horizontal accuracies of the data as well as to provide important information on the laser operating periods and data releases. This table is a single source for much of the important data related to these operational campaigns, and it includes:
- Laser transmit energies for the two wavelengths
- Laser footprint size and shape
- Pointing and geolocation accuracies
Definition from NSIDC DAAC ICESat/GLAS Data Laser Operation Periods
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Browse An image that provides a high-level view of the associated dataset/granule or series/collection metadata item. Browse do not have an independent representation or data model, but are contained within the Series/Collection or Dataset/Granule metadata. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Browse Data Product Subsets of a larger data set, excluding the directory and guide information, generated to allow rapid viewing (i.e., browsing) of the larger data set by a potential user. For example, the browse product for an image data set with multiple spectral bands and moderate spatial resolution could be an image in two spectral channels, at a degraded spatial resolution. The form of browse data is generally unique for each type of data set and depends on the nature of the data and the criteria used. Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
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Calibration Data Instrument and platform engineering data collected during operations (e.g., on orbit), including platform and instrument environment, events and maneuvers; attitude and ephemeris; aircraft position; acquisition logs that record data gaps; calibration look-up tables; and any significant external event data that may have impacted the observations. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Calibration Method The methods used for instrument/sensor radiometric and geometric calibration while in operation (e.g., in orbit). 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Catalog Interoperability Refers to the capability of the user interface software of one data set directory or catalog to interact with the user interface at another data set directory or catalog. EOS Glossary and list of Acronyms/Abbreviations
Client Partners An ECHO Client Partner works within the ECHO Community by developing a software application that communicates with web services available through the ECHO API. The ECHO API allows for various client types including user-interactive, metadata harvesting and other batch processing for scientists and other clients. Most ECHO clients provide access to ECHO's Earth Science metadata and browse catalog and order broker, while other client objectives exist to facilitate Data Partner data management and metrics collection. ESDIS EOS Clearing HOuse (ECHO) - Client Partners
Clients (ECS) A user or software process making a request for ECS data or services. EOSDIS Services

Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Cloud Computing Cloud computing is a model for enabling ubiquitous, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction. Definition from NIST

Reference: ESDIS 2013 Cloud Computing
Collection or aggregate metadata These are metadata elements that describe an entire set of data products or files. Values of collection metadata apply to all of the products in a specific collection. Collections may represent the same release of any given data product, sets of data generated during an experiment, a campaign or an algorithmic test ESDIS Metadata Standards
Community Capabilities Community capabilities provide specialized and innovative services to data users and/or research products offering new scientific insight. ESDIS Community Data Systems Programs
Core Capabilities The core capabilities provide the basic infrastructure for robust and reliable data capture, processing, archiving, and distributing a set of data products to a large and diverse user community. ESDIS Community Data Systems Programs
Correlative Data Scientific data from other sources used in the interpretation or validation of instrument data products, e.g., ground truth data and/or data products of other instruments. (This data is not used for processing instrument data). Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
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Data NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS) comprises a series of satellites, a science component and a data system which is called the Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS). EOSDIS distributes thousands of Earth system science data products and associated services for interdisciplinary studies. Almost all data in EOSDIS are held on-line and accessed via ftp.
In this context the term 'data' includes observation data, metadata, products, information, algorithms, including scientific source code, documentation, models, images, and research results
EOSDIS Data
NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Data Assimilation Data assimilation is the process by which observations are incorporated into a computer model of a real system. Definiton from Wikipedia - Data assimilation
Data Collection A grouping of data objects. This is typically more than one data granule. Definition from Vocabulary for Virtual Observatories and Data Systems; Hourclé, J.A. and King, T.A. (pdf)
Data Format Control Documents Data Format Control Documents (DFCDs), and other data format documents (e.g., Data Format Requirements Documents (DFRDs)), define the formats of data units that are transferred across an interface and the control codes used in the data formats. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
Data Maturity Levels Beta Products intended to enable users to gain familiarity with the parameters and the data formats.
Provisional Product was defined to facilitate data exploration and process studies that do not require rigorous validation. These data are partially validated and improvements are continuing; quality may not be optimal since validation and quality assurance are ongoing.
Validated Products are high quality data that have been fully validated and quality checked, and that are deemed suitable for systematic studies such as climate change, as well as for shorter term, process studies. These are publication quality data with well-defined uncertainties, but they are also subject to continuing validation, quality assurance, and further improvements in subsequent versions. Users are expected to be familiar with quality summaries of all data before publication of results; when in doubt, contact the appropriate instrument team.
Stage 1 Validation: Product accuracy is estimated using a small number of independent measurements obtained from selected locations and time periods and ground-truth/field program efforts.
Stage 2 Validation: Product accuracy is estimated over a significant set of locations and time periods by comparison with reference in situ or other suitable reference data. Spatial and temporal consistency of the product and with similar products has been evaluated over globally representative locations and time periods. Results are published in the peer-reviewed literature.
Stage 3 Validation: Product accuracy has been assessed. Uncertainties in the product and its associated structure are well quantified from comparison with reference in situ or other suitable reference data. Uncertainties are characterized in a statistically robust way over multiple locations and time periods representing global conditions. Spatial and temporal consistency of the product and with similar products has been evaluated over globally representative locations and periods. Results are published in the peer-reviewed literature.
Definition from NASA Earth Science - Data Maturity Levels
Data Model An earth science metadata model, which supports the data standardization necessary for total system interoperability within a heterogeneous, open systems environment. The Data Model includes diagrams, which graphically illustrate the relationships of classes, the attributes contained within the classes, the characteristics of the relationships between classes, and the attribute specifications. Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Data Partners Data Partners provide the ECHO community with metadata representing their Earth Science data holdings. Client applications have access to data holdings via order distribution or online access. Data Partners retain complete control over what metadata is represented in ECHO including inserting new metadata, modifying existing metadata and removing old metadata. Data Partners may also establish data access restrictions to control the availability of sensitive data holdings. ESDIS EOS Clearing HOuse (ECHO) - Client Partners
Data Products A processed collection (one or more) of parameters packaged with associated ancillary and labeling data, and formatted with uniform temporal and spatial resolution. (For example, the collection of data distributed by a data center or subsetted by a data center for distribution.) There are two types of data products:
a. Standard: A data product produced at a DAAC by a community consensus algorithm for a wide community of users.
b. Special: A data product produced at a science computing facility by a research algorithm for later migration to a community consensus algorithm and can be archived and distributed by a DAAC.
Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Data Quality Quality indicators associated with an individual data product including drop-outs, data gaps, out-of-range values, etc.
Data Services The EOSDIS data centers process, archive, document, and distribute data from NASA's past and current Earth-observing satellites and field measurement programs. Each center serves a specific Earth system science discipline and provides users with data products, services, and data-handling tools unique to the center's specialty. User services include:
- Assistance in selecting and obtaining data
- Access to data-handling and visualization tools
- Notification of data-related news
- Technical support and referrals
EOSDIS - ESDIS Project
Data Set A logical grouping or collection of similar or related data. Data products a producer has defined as an advertisement. Earthdata website

Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Data Set Documentation Information describing the characteristics of a data set and its component granules, including format, source instrumentation, calibration, processing, algorithms, etc. EOS Glossary and list of Acronyms/Abbreviations
Data Visualization See: Visualization
Datacasting Datacasting is an RSS/GeoRSS-based technology for distributing Earth Science data EOSDIS LANCE near-real time datacasting
Dataset The use of term “dataset” in NASA Earth Science Data Systems (ESDS) metadata conflicts with ISO terminology. In ISO, “dataset” means “granule”. In NASA ESDS, “dataset” means “collection”. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Dataset/Granule The smallest aggregation of data that can be independently managed (described, inventoried, and retrieved). Datasets/granules have their own metadata model and support values associated with the additional attributes defined by series/collections that they are part of. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Dataset/Granule metadata Metadata elements that describe a single instance of a data file. Values of dataset/granule metadata apply to all of the data in that one file. Typical metadata in this category describe spatial and temporal extent of the data instance as well as the quality and lineage. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Derived Products Derived products are higher level products (level 1b through 4) where calibration and geo-location transformations have been applied to generate sensor units, and/or algorithms have been applied to generate gridded geophysical parameters. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Detailed Mission Requirements (DMR) DMRs include Mission-Specific Requirements Documents (MSRDs) and mission requirement documents (e.g., Ground System Requirements Documents (GSRDs), and Mission Operations Requirements Documents (MORDs)). DMRs contain the results of the requirements identification and derivation activities and provide the basis for system design for individual missions. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
Distributed Architecture The allocation of EOSDIS elements to various locations to take best advantage of each location's different institutional capabilities and science expertise. EOSDIS System Description
Distributed System EOSDIS is designed as a distributed system, with major facilities at data centers located throughout the United States. These institutions are custodians of EOS mission data and ensure that data will be easily accessible to users. Acting in concert, the data centers provide reliable, robust services to users whose needs may cross the traditional boundaries of a specific discipline, while continuing to support the particular needs of users within the discipline communities. EOSDIS System Description
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Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) The Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) is a key core capability in NASA’s Earth Science Data Systems Program. It provides end-to-end capabilities for managing NASA’s Earth science data from various sources – satellites, aircraft, field measurements, and various other programs. For the EOS satellite missions, EOSDIS provides capabilities for command and control, scheduling, data capture and initial (Level 0) processing. These capabilities, constituting the EOSDIS Mission Operations, are managed by the Earth Science Mission Operations (ESMO) Project. NASA network capabilities transport the data to the science operations facilities.
The remaining capabilities of EOSDIS constitute the EOSDIS Science Operations, which are managed by the Earth Science Data and Information System (ESDIS) Project. These capabilities include: generation of higher level (Level 1-4) science data products for EOS missions; archiving and distribution of data products from EOS and other satellite missions, as well as aircraft and field measurement campaigns. The EOSDIS science operations are performed within a distributed system of many interconnected nodes (Science Investigator-led Processing Systems and distributed, discipline-specific, Earth science data centers) with specific responsibilities for production, archiving, and distribution of Earth science data products. The distributed data centers serve a large and diverse user community (as indicated by EOSDIS performance metrics) by providing capabilities to search and access science data products and specialized services.
Wikipedia - EOSDIS - Data Center Search & Order Tools
Earth Science Data and Information System (ESDIS) Project The Earth Science Data and Information System (ESDIS) Project is a part of the Earth Science Projects Division under the Flight Projects Directorate at Goddard Space Flight Center. The ESDIS Project manages the science systems of the Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS). EOSDIS provides science data to a wide community of users for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. ESDIS
Earth Science Data Type (ESDT) Each type of science data collected by an instrument aboard a satellite supported by the ECS is given a data type name to be stored or archived in the ECS inventory (e.g., MISR001.) ESDTs also define the Services which can be applied to the data and the metadata associated with the data. In addition, ESDTs are defined for all data referenced in the ECS inventory and this includes some non-satellite data, and some non-instrument data (e.g., science software archive packages, algorithm packages, pge tar files, and delivered algorithm packages). Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Engineering Metadata Metadata used by the investigation team to record information about the sensor and the observation. It may be extraneous to scientific uses or it may be derivable to science metadata, such as ‘filter=4’ which could resolve to a spectral range or polarization. Definition from Vocabulary for Virtual Observatories and Data Systems; Hourclé, J.A. and King, T.A. (pdf)
EOSDIS Core System (ECS) The infrastructure which provides NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS) and other U.S. and international scientists a broad range of desktop services from 12 science data centers, the Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs), operated by NASA and other agencies. The ECS infrastructure also supports exchange of data and research results within the science community, across multiple agencies and internationally. ECS is the evolutionary base for accelerating the pace of Earth science research.
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Forward Processing A term used in data processing when the data is moving from version to version.
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Golden Month The only data available for MODIS V004 is the Golden Month, which is a sample of MODIS/Terra V004 data covering the time period 29 August 2002 (day of year 241) through 7 October 2002 (day of year 280). The Golden Month is only available by special request by contacting NSIDC User Services.
Once Version 6 is available to the users, then there will be a Golden Month for Version 5 data. MODIS always creates a Golden Month for the previous version of data.
NSIDC DAAC MODIS data - Data Versions
Granule or product metadata The smallest aggregation of data independently managed (i.e., described, inventoried, retrievable.) Granules can be managed as logical granules and/or physical granules.

These are metadata elements that describe a single instance of a data product. Values of granule metadata apply to all of the data in that one granule. Typical metadata in this category describe spatial and temporal extent of the data as well as the quality and lineage of the data.
Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project

ESDIS Metadata Standards
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Hierarchical Data Format The Hierarchical Data Format (HDF) is designed to facilitate managing and sharing scientific data. HDF includes two formats (HDF4 and HDF5), software for accessing data in HDF formats, and applications for working with HDF data. HDF is designed for efficient storage and access of high volume, complex data, and for mixing varieties of data types in a single container. ESDIS Data Format Standards
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Information System See: Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS)
Any system composed of hardware, software, and operational procedures components required to process, store, and/or transmit data.
An integrated combination of software, hardware, and operational procedures that provides a useful capability. An information system is generally software intensive.
EOS-AM Spacecraft Glossary
Ingestion Processes done on receipt of data to insert it into a data repository; this may include validation or other quality analysis, transformation of the data or metadata, cataloging or repackaging. Definition from Vocabulary for Virtual Observatories and Data Systems; Hourclé, J.A. and King, T.A. (pdf)
Interface Control Documents ICDs are used to record design agreements for the interfaces between participating organizations. ICDs provide a means to evaluate and control all mutually interdependent and/or interacting design parameters of the interface. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
Interface Requirement Documents IRDs define the requirements for data exchanges across an interface between separately managed systems or subsystems. The requirements statements in IRDs are derived directly from project requirements documents. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
Interoperability The ESDIS Project facilitates interoperability across U.S. and global data system entities through active participation in interagency and international groups. Also, the ESDIS Project and the EOSDIS Data Centers play a major role in the broader Data System Communities including the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP Federation) and various standards bodies. ESDIS Community
Inventory A uniform set of descriptions of granules from one or more data sets with information required for selecting and obtaining a subset of those granules. Granule descriptions typically include temporal and spatial coverage, status indicators, and physical storage information. An inventory can describe physical granules, logical granules, or both, including a mapping between them if they are not identical.
Note: The inventory is not the granules themselves, but rather the descriptive data for each of them, specifically used.
Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
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Level 0 Reconstructed, unprocessed instrument and payload data at full resolution, with any and all communications artifacts (e.g., synchronization frames, communications headers, duplicate data) removed. (In most cases, the EOS Data and Operations System (EDOS) provides these data to the data centers as production data sets for processing by the Science Data Processing Segment (SDPS) or by a SIPS to produce higher-level products). NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Level 1A Standard Product Reconstructed, unprocessed instrument data at full resolution, time-referenced, and annotated with ancillary information, including radiometric and geometric calibration coefficients and georeferencing parameters (e.g., platform ephemeris) computed and appended but not applied to Level 0 data. NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Level 1B Standard Product Level 1A data that have been processed to sensor units (not all instruments have Level 1B source data). NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Level 2 Standard Product Derived geophysical variables at the same resolution and location as Level 1 source data. NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Level 3 Standard Product Variables mapped on uniform space-time grid scales, usually with some completeness and consistency. NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Level 4 Standard Product Model output or results from analyses of lower-level data (e.g., variables derived from multiple measurements). Source: NASA Science/Earth Web page. NASA Earth Science - Data and Information Policy
Local or parameter metadata These are metadata elements that describe a specific component of the data product. Values of local metadata apply specifically to the component with which they are associated. These elements often specify units of measure, the range of data within the array, the dimension sizes and identifying names for each dimension. Earthdata website - Metadata Standards
Long Term Archive Archives in which the primary goal is preservation of the data rather than immediate usage. Definition from Vocabulary for Virtual Observatories and Data Systems; Hourclé, J.A. and King, T.A. (pdf)
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Metadata Information about data to facilitate discovery, search, access, understanding and usage associated with each of the data products. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Metadata repository A metadata repository, commonly referred to as a catalog, is accessed by client applications that support user queries. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Middleware EOSDIS provides convenient mechanisms for locating and accessing products of interest. EOSDIS provides middleware called the EOS Clearing House (ECHO) that provides Application Programmer Interfaces (APIs) through which search and access software (clients) can be developed. EOSDIS System Description
Mission Readiness Test Plan The MRT plan documents the strategy that will be used to verify and ensure that all system components working together meet design specifications and requirements for the mission. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
Modeling An investigative technique that uses a mathematical or physical representation of a system or theory that accounts for all or some of its known properties. Models are often used to test the effects of changes of system components on the overall performance of the system. EOS Glossary and list of Acronyms/Abbreviations
Mosaic A composite of images. EOSDIS LANCE - Rapid Response

Definition from NASA Lunar Mapping and Modeling Project (LMMP) Wiki
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Near Real Time (NRT) Data Products Data products from MODIS, OMI, AIRS, and MLS instruments in less than 2.5 hours from the Land, Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE). EOSDIS Discovering Data
NetCDF Files NetCDF is a set of software libraries and self-describing, machine-independent data formats that support the creation, access, and sharing of array-oriented scientific data. UCAR Unidata Program Center netCDF documentation
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Operations Agreements Operations Agreements are even lower level, more detailed interface documents that are created to help define the operations use of the interfaces, including such things as addresses, phone numbers, and names of responsible personnel. These documents are not intended for project-level development and control. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
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Parameter (or Variable) A parameter or variable is any of a set of physical properties whose values determine the characteristics or behavior of something, for example, parameters of the atmosphere such as temperature, pressure, and density. These terms are used interchangeably. The GCMD uses the term variable and NSIDC uses the term parameter. Definition from Merrian Webster - Parameter
Portal (Web Portal) A web portal is a web site that brings information from diverse sources in a unified way. Usually, each information source gets its dedicated area on the page for displaying information (a portlet); often, the user can configure which ones to display. Definition from Wikipedia - Web portal
Processing Levels See: EOSDIS Processing Levels EOSDIS Processing Levels
Product A permanently archived set of output data generated by the science software. Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
Product Application Useful references to published articles about the use of the data and user feedback received by the science and instrument teams about the products. Includes reports of any peculiarities or notable features observed in the products. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Product Generation Algorithm Detailed discussion of processing algorithms, outputs, error budgets and limitations. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Product Maturity Codes (also see Data Maturity Levels) AMSR-E data file names include a product maturity code (such as B01, T02, or V03) to indicate which version of the algorithm was used to produce the data. The product maturity code includes both a maturity level (P, R, B, T, or V) and a two-digit iteration number, such as B06 in the following example file name: AMSR_E_L3_SeaIce25km_B06_20080207.hdf.
Table 1 describes each product maturity level.
Table 1. Description of Product Maturity Levels
Level Description
P Preliminary - refers to non-standard, near-real-time data available from NSIDC. These data are only available for a limited time until the corresponding standard product is ingested at NSIDC.
R Near Real-Time - refers to near real-time data produced and distributed via the NASA Land Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE) data system.
B Beta - indicates a developing algorithm with updates anticipated.
T Transitional - period between beta and validated where the product is past the beta stage, but not quite ready for validation. This is where the algorithm matures and stabilizes.
V Validated - products are upgraded to Validated once the algorithm is verified by the algorithm team and validated by the validation teams. Validated products have an associated validation stage. Refer to Table 2 for a description of the stages.
Example from NSIDC DAAC AMSR-E/Aqua Data - AMSR-E Data Versions
Product Quality Description of the impact to product quality due to issues with computationally intensive operations (e.g., large matrix inversions, truncation and rounding). 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Product Team Names of key science team leads and product team members (development, help desk and operations), roles, performing organization, contact information, sponsoring agencies or organizations and comments about the products. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Project Plan The Project Plan contains the technical approaches and management plans to implement the project requirements. It defines, at a high level, the scope of the project, the implementation approach, the environment within which the project operates, and the baseline commitments of the program and project. From NPR 7120.5D

Definition from EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
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Quick-Look Data A data product, usually related to a Level 1 or higher Standard Data Product, which is generated and distributed in near-real time. EOS Glossary and list of Acronyms/Abbreviations
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Raw Data Raw data are data values at full resolution as directly measured by a spaceborne, airborne or in situ instrument. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Release Number See: Collection
Repository A system for storing objects; the objects typically cannot be interacted with from within the repository, and must be retrieved to be used; it may contain digital or physical resources. This includes institutional repositories, which collects articles, documents and other research or output from a university, company or other institution; discipline repositories that collects resources for a given discipline or group, such as arXiv or ADS; or data repositories that focus on collecting scientific data. Definition from Vocabulary for Virtual Observatories and Data Systems; Hourclé, J.A. and King, T.A. (pdf)
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Science Data Product Software Science data product generation software and software documentation. Source code used to generate products at all levels in the science data processing system. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Science Data Product Validation Datasets and documentation. Accuracy of products, as measured by validation testing, and compared to accuracy requirements. Description of validation process, including identification of validation data sets, measurement protocols, data collection, analysis and accuracy reporting. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Science Data Products Algorithm Inputs Identify all ancillary data or other data sets used in generation or calibration of the data or derived product at all levels 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Science Data Software Tools Product access (reader) tools. Software source code that would facilitate use of the calibration data, ancillary data and the data products at all levels. 423-SPEC-001 NASA Earth Science Data Preservation Content Specification
Search and Order Tools Each EOSDIS Data Center is distinguished from one another by their specific Earth system science discipline. In addition to the search-and-order capabilities provided by GCMD and ECHO/REVERB, the data centers have individual online systems that allow them to provide unique services for users of a particular type of data. The center-specific systems emphasize data products, services, and data-handling tools unique to the data center. EOSDIS - Discovering Data
Series/Collection A grouping of science data that all come from the same source, such as a modeling group or institution. Series/collections have information that is common across all the datasets/granules they contain. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Series/Collection metadata Metadata elements that describe an entire set of data files. Values of series/collection metadata apply to all of the files in a specific aggregate. Series/collection metadata may represent the same release of any given file, sets of data generated during an experiment, a campaign or an algorithm test. 423-RQMT-003 Metadata Requirements – Base Reference for NASA Earth Science Data Products
Services A request to obtain or perform a task with the ECS such as a data search, data retrieval, data insert, start an application, stop an application, start a session, terminate a session, send a notification, or make a subscription.
Spatial Coverage Refers to a geographical area where data was collected, a place which is the subject of a collection, or a location which is the focus of an activity. Spatial coverage can be a point location or an area, the latter usually a specific 'rectangle' (e.g. a bounding box) on a map or a region. This is described using geospatial coordinates for a point or an area (for example, latitude and longitude), or through the use of place or regional names (for example, Barrow Island; Gippsland, Australia). Regional names may be based on legal jurisdiction (for example, South Australia). Australian National Data Service - Content Providers Guide - Spatial and Temporal Coverage
Stakeholder Communities ECHO supports the diversified user community by providing common programmatic interfaces, based on standards, for all stakeholder communities. By providing these programmatic interfaces to a common infrastructure, ECHO enables the different stakeholder communities to build their own applications and user experiences that meet their user community needs, leveraging this common infrastructure. ESDIS EOS Clearing HOuse (ECHO) - Client Partners
Standard Products See: Level 1A, 1B, 2, 3, & 4 Standard Products EOSDIS System Description
Subsetting The extraction of a multi-dimensional rectangular array of pixels from a single data granule, where consecutive pixels are extracted from each array dimension. For each dimension, the size of the pixel array is characterized by the starting pixel location and the number of pixels to extract. Definition from Glossary of Terms for ECS Project
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Technology Infusion The purpose of the Technology Infusion Working Group (TIWG) is to enable NASA's Earth Science community to reach its research, application, and education goals more quickly and cost effectively through widespread adoption of key emerging information technologies. Earth Science Data System Working Group (ESDSWG) Technology Infusion Group
Temporal Coverage A time period during which data was collected or observations made, or a time period that an activity or collection is linked to intellectually or thematically, for example, 1997 to 1998; the 18th century. Australian National Data Service - Content Providers Guide - Spatial and Temporal Coverage
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User Satisfaction Data The ESDIS Project is responsible for: Collecting metrics and user satisfaction data to learn how to continue improving services provided to users. EOSDIS ESDIS Project
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Validation Stage (also see Product Maturity Codes) A Validation stage (1, 2, or 3) may be appended to the product maturity code of ‘Validated’, such as V09-Stage3. Table 2 describes each validation stage.
Table 2. Description of Validation Stages
Validation Stage Description
Stage 1 Product accuracy is estimated using a small number of independent measurements obtained from selected locations, time periods, and ground-truth/field program efforts.
Stage 2 Product accuracy is assessed over a widely distributed set of locations and time periods via several ground-truth and validation efforts.
Stage 3 Product accuracy is assessed, and the uncertainties in the product are well established via independent measurements made in a systematic and statistically robust way that represents global conditions.
Variable See: Parameter
Version/Release Number (also Collection) Collection means the same thing as version; however, the MODIS science team uses the term Collection such as in MODIS Collection 5, but NSIDC uses Version as in MODIS Version 5.
Also, GLAS refers to a Release such as Release 33, which is also the same as version or collection. Thus, all three terms mean the same thing depending on which product you are using.
Example: NSIDC MODIS/Terra Snow Cover 5-min L2 Swath 500m, Version 5

Example: NSIDC ICESat/GLAS Data Release Schedules
Visualization Data visualization is the study of the visual representation of data, meaning "information that has been abstracted in some schematic form, including attributes or variables for the units of information". Definition from Wikipedia - Data Visualization
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Working Agreement (W/A) A Working Agreement outlines the working commitments made between the ESDIS Project and another organization for developing, implementing and/or operating portions of the data system. EOSDIS Data System Interfaces
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Page Last Updated: Apr 25, 2019 at 2:08 PM EDT