The ARM External Data Center (XDC) identifies sources and acquires data, called “external data,” to augment the data being generated within the ARM Facility. The scientific need and the priorities for acquiring, processing, and archiving the external datastreams are established by the science working groups and considers such factors as:
- Availability and accessibility in other archives
- Acquisition cost
- Ease of use of the native data format.
If this analysis determines that significant value to ARM data users will be added, the XDC will develop an automated process to acquire the data from the data provider, and reformat it as necessary into an ARM-compatible format. The processed data and, except for the most voluminous data sets, the native-format data, are sent to the ARM permanent archive.
The External Data Center collects and processes a wide variety of data including model, satellite, and surface data. For more information on available data streams, see XDC data set descriptions.
The XDC also provides support for other ARM information infrastructure services, e.g., web-servers, databases, metadata, and field campaign data.