Standard metadata headers are required in every SeaBASS file. Select a header to view its definition, or if you are just getting started, scroll down just below the table of content to see an example header.
To assist with the standardization of SeaBASS data files, the SIMBIOS Project developed feedback software, named FCHECK, to evaluate the format of submitted data files. Since then, it has been rebuilt from the ground up by the SeaBASS development team to make it available to the end-users. Using FCHECK, contributors may evaluate the format of their SeaBASS-compatible files prior to submission.
Below is a table of the standard field names and associated units for use in submitting data to the SeaBASS bio-optical archive. The field names are NOT case sensitive. Use the search bar or the find function in your browser to search the table for words or patterns found in the field names, units or descriptions.
Special notes regarding wavelength-specific measurements: There are two different ways to indicate wavelengths in a SeaBASS file. If metadata such as date, location or depth vary within a file, then wavelength should be appended to the field name for every measurement combination. For example, downwelling irradiance measured at 412.3 nm would become 'Ed412.3' (listed along with any other Ed measurements, like Ed416.2, Ed419, etc), or aerosol optical thickness measured at 1020 nm would become 'AOT1020'. Alternately, if date, location and depth are assumed to be approximately constant for all measurements in the file, then use the field 'wavelength' to provide a column of the measured wavelengths and don't include them as part of the field names (this organization is commonly used for reporting spectrophotometry measurements).
To provide additional information about a field, for example, the standard deviation of the reported average of replicate measurements, refer to the table of field name modifiers below. For example, "chl_sd" or "ag510_sd". More information and examples can be found in the tables of suffixes and modifiers. Please contact SeaBASS staff if you want to discuss adding new fields.
Notes on HPLC pigment field names
To account for the continuous growth of the bio-optical data set and the wide variety of supported data types, the NASA Ocean Biology Processing Group felt it essential to develop efficient data ingestion and storage techniques. While this requires a specific data file format, the data protocols were designed to be as straightforward and effortless as possible on the part of the contributor, while still offering a useful format for internal efforts. The system was intended to meet the following conditions: simple data format, easily expandable and flexible enough to accommodate large data sets; global portability across multiple computer platforms; and web accessible data holdings with sufficient security to limit access to authorized users.
The SeaBASS Regional Time Series Tool is designed to provide comparisons over time between averaged level 2 satellite-borne ocean color instrument observations as well as in situ measurements. For a given region, one or more satellite sensors must be selected and then all available satellite and in situ data collected within the bounds of the study site will be plotted for comparison in common figures and frequency distributions. User options are available to select a measurement product of interest (e.g., Rrs, IOPs, Chl, etc.), adjust the data averaging period (weekly, monthly, seasonal), the year range, and other graph options. Each region has a brief description that includes links to extra information about the primary in situ data sources and a map that shows the boundaries used to define each region. Users may also download the data that were used to generate the figures.
The following section contains various examples for SeaBASS submitters and users.
The NASA OBPG routinely downloads data from the AERONET-Ocean Color website for use in satellite sensor validation match-up analysis. As described by Zibordi et al. (2009), the AERONET-OC network consists of globally distributed autonomous radiometer systems maintained at fixed offshore sites. Please refer to the rest of the information in this article for details on how to acknowledge the use of AERONET-OC data and how the OBPG processes these data.
High quality in situ
measurements are prerequisite for satellite data product validation, algorithm development, and many climate-related inquiries. As such, the NASA Ocean Biology Processing Group
(OBPG) maintains a local repository of in situ
oceanographic and atmospheric data to support their regular scientific analyses. The SeaWiFS Project originally developed this system, SeaBASS, to catalog radiometric and phytoplankton pigment data used their calibration and validation activities. To facilitate the assembly of a global data set, SeaBASS was expanded with oceanographic and atmospheric data collected by participants in the SIMBIOS Program, under NASA Research Announcements NRA-96 and NRA-99, which has aided considerably in minimizing spatial bias and maximizing data acquisition rates. Archived data include measurements of apparent
and inherent optical properties
, phytoplankton pigment concentrations
, and other related oceanographic and atmospheric data, such as water temperature, salinity, stimulated fluorescence, and aerosol optical thickness. Data are collected using a number of different instrument packages
, such as profilers, buoys, and hand-held instruments, and manufacturers on a variety of platforms
, including ships and moorings.