The Year of Tropical Convection (YoTC), http://www.ucar.edu/yotc/, a joint activity of the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) and World Weather Research Programme (WWRP)/THORPEX, is a 2-year period (May 2008 – April 2010) of coordinated observing, modeling, and forecasting with a focus on organized tropical convection, its prediction, and predictability. A major obstacle in research and model improvement of tropical convection and its multi-scale structure is that there is currently no single web portal or application that provides “one stop shopping” for the relevant NASA multi-satellite data.
The goal of the NASA Giovanni for the YoTC project is to facilitate NASA satellite data usage by providing a way the YoTC community can easily read, subset, visualize, access, and harmonize data from multiple space-borne sensors.
The NASA Giovanni is a web based application developed by the NASA Goddard Earth Science (GES) Data and Information Service Center (DISC) that provides a simple and intuitive way to visualize, analyze, and access/download vast amounts of Earth science remote sensing data. For a more complete description, see http://giovanni.gsfc.nasa.gov/.
YOTC-GS provides access to Level 2 (i.e. swath level data) and/or Level 3 (i.e. gridded/mapped data) forms of satellite data, the choice – or both – depending on what is appropriate and relevant. The former is needed and better suited for detailed process examination and the latter is needed and more well suited for examination of phenomena, conditions and processes on large to global scales, and for comparisons to global model analyses, prediction and simulation output.
Giovanni provides what the international Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS) Working Group on Information Systems and Services (WGISS) refers to as “data democracy.” This term implies that data is available to all users in a standard, easy-to-implement format that does not presuppose prior experience or substantial resources. Anyone with a Web browser can access NASA satellite data through Giovanni without downloading any special software. There is no need to learn arcane data formats to retrieve and process data, and the subsetted data can be downloaded in a variety of common formats. All the statistical analysis is done via a regular web browser. Giovanni allows for equal access by established research establishments and users new to satellite data alike.
Sign up for the YOTC-GS listserv to receive announcements on the latest data information, tools and services that become available, and more! Contact the GES DISC User Services to be added to the list.