CU Boulder AeroSpace Ventures: Tom Baltzer, Space Weather Portal

Good morning, everyone. My name is Tom Baltzer. I’m with the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics here. If you happened to be here last year, I was also afforded the opportunity to talk a little bit about LASP, about the data systems
group that I’m a part of, and about the LASP web team that I lead that is doing a lot of work in the area of providing access
to disparate data sources, through a model that we’ve developed over about a decade’s worth of work, to provide access, a simplified, unified access
to disparate data sources. And what this has afforded
us the opportunity to do is to get involved with the Space Weather TREC initiative by proposing to develop a space weather portal that would provide researchers with access to disparate data sources from wherever they happen to be housed. That could could be at JPL, at the USGS, locally here at LASP, our data sets, internationally we acquire data sets. And by providing a
singular model and library and web services to provide that access in a unified way, we’re able to create front end capabilities to visualize and download these data sets for researchers to be able to access. So, what we’ve been able to do, actually, in a pretty short period of time because of that infrastructure
that we’ve developed, is to create a prototype
of a space weather portal that provides access to
quite a number of data sets. We began the work in July of last year. We had a storymapping exercise. The team uses an agile scrum methodology for doing our development work and we really try to involve the end users and subject matter area
experts right from the get go and include them in the actual
development of the tools. And so in that period of time, we’ve been able to create a prototype that at this point, I believe,
has 78 different data sets ranging from solar data sets
that come from NASA, from LASP to data sets that are
more in the mesosphere, ionosphere, and thermosphere that are provided by our
colleague here, Eric, to also solar data sets provided by SDO. Just most recently, we’ve added in these, let’s see if I can figure
out the pointer, here it is, we’ve added in SDO/AIA
imagery and HMI imagery. This is the most recent data
set that we’ve been able to put into a time series view. And using all of these data
sets together in the proto, we’re able to create the sun to mud story that Tom Berger was talking about earlier. So, when a user comes
in, a researcher comes in and wants to work with
the portal, they’ll select a time frame and we
provide markers to indicate known events that have occurred. In this case, we’re looking
at the St. Patrick’s Day event of 2015. And the end user is able to, sort of, select a time frame of data
that they’re interested in and actually, when they’re
selecting the time frame, it shows the entirety of available data, which right now runs
from 1978 to current day. But with that, they can kinda scale down and drill down to the time of interest that they’re looking at,
the event of interest. And with that, they will
then see the data sets that we currently have available. Once they’ve got those, they can go ahead and start plotting them. And what we can see here is that we tell the sun to mud story with EVE data, the spike
here in EVE diodes data shows the event occurring on the sun and, at the same time, you go ahead and grab that marker of time and look at the image from SDO, you can see that, in fact, yeah, there’s an event that’s occurring that is sending stuff our way. Then we go ahead and roll
forward in time a little bit and start looking at the ACE data, ACE is spacecraft that NASA has. It’s parked in the L1 Lagrangian point about a million miles from earth and it receives solar wind information as well as charged particle information. And we see a big uptick
in charged particles. Well, so now what happens when it actually gets to the earth? We obtained data from our USGS partners and we can see here at, I believe this is a South African station,
they run magnetometers all around planet earth, that, wow, there’s
definitely a decided impact on the pattern of what the
magnetometer is registering. So, using all this, adding more data sets to the space weather portal, we intend to provide
a tool for researchers to be able to get a hold of
the data sets that they need in a nice, unified way with a programmatic API if they’d like. Of course, we’re using
the programmatic API to provide this front end, or to just go ahead and download the data, we provide capability to download either individual plots or a collection. And then work with that data locally if that’s what they would like to do. So that’s kinda my story. I’m stickin’ by it and thank
you very much for your time. [applause] [tense string music]

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