Summer 2012 saw 5 undersgraduate students arrive from accross the UK to take part in a variety of projects with CEDA working on data cataloguing, digitisation and archiving work as well as developing programming skills and exploring CEDA's new paralllel storage and processing system.
Each of the 5 students have made a significant contribution to data set access throughout the Centre for Environmental Data Archival (CEDA) in the last few months:
Nicola Siddall was working with Steve Donegan and Wendy Garland to archive ARSF aircraft earth observation data from the 1980s and carried out a full review of their meta data records. This has been a task of determined “Data Archaeology” by Nicola as she scoured the flight log books, digitising these and adding them to the CEDA Document Repository and linking the informaitn they contained with data held in the NEODC's ARSF archive. Often the informaiton availalbe was ambiguous and data format information missing, but Nicola succeeded in greatly improving informaiton on the 512 flights and even helped to provide scripts to provide preview images of the ATM data now in the NEODC archive. For more information see Nicola's end of placement talk here.
Jenna Thornton was tasked with working through the entire BADC metadata catalogue, carrying out a thoughour - and much needed - review of all the informaiton held on BADC datasets. This was partly in response to NERC's Science Information Strategy Implementation Programme to improve metadata held on NERC data and also to improve the informaiton presented to BADC users on some of the most popular datasets. Having improved the metadata records on over 200 datasets Jenna has also helped CEDA to record a webguide to the explain to our users on how to use our metadata catalogue system - which will be of great help to data users. Jenna's work is summaries in her presenation here.
The UKSSDC has over 25,400 images of the sun dating from 1903 to 1942 on glass plates and photo paper which UKSSDC
received from the University of Cambridge in 2008. Chris worked over the summer to catalogue (and dusted!) all these images and added details of the entire physical archive to the UKSSDC's SQL catalogue and has created a web service for users to query the solar images records. Thanks to Chris's hard work these records are now discoverable by the science community for the first time, opening up this wealth of historic data. Chris's presentation can be seen here.
Working on a project to digitise books of photo-heliographic records, dating from 1875 Jonathan was working on assessing the resources needed to complete this digitisation project. The early books are now very fragile, requiring great care in dealing with them, but Jonathan digitised all of the books and made them available on the Royal Observatory Greenwich - Photo-Heliographic Results pages of the UKSSDC website. To find out more about his work please see his end of placement presentation here.
Our final student, Joseph Landsdowne worked on a project to test out parallel Python packages to process the data held in CEDA’s new parallel access storage and processing architecture. Joseph then linked up the processing to a web-based Python tool to control the back-end processing. This work will feed into CEDA’s new environmental data processing suite for the wider user community. Joseph's presentation about his work within the IPython Parallel Processing of CMIP5 data can bee seen here, while the project pages are accessible here.