Dataset Interoperability Recommendations for Earth Science

Summary

These documents contain a series of recommendations made by NASA's Earth Science Data System Working Groups (ESDSWG) Dataset Interoperability Working Group (DIWG) that are meant to increase and enhance the interoperability of Earth Science data product files. The DIWG recommendations herein embody best practices to reduce and bridge gaps between geoscience dataset formats widely used at NASA and elsewhere and to help ensure that Earth science datasets smoothly interoperate with each other regardless of their origin.

The first document, Dataset Interoperability Recommendations for Earth Science, was published in July 2016 and contains 12 recommendations. The second, Dataset Interoperability Recommendations for Earth Science: Part 2, was published in April 2019. These are a continuation of the 2016 recommendations with the same goal of improving the interoperability of Earth Science dataset files. Most cover new areas of interoperability while some expand on the 2016 recommendations.

Status

The Dataset Interoperability Recommendations for Earth Science document was recommended for use in NASA Earth Science Data Systems in July, 2016.

Specification Documents

Recommendations

Dataset Interoperability Recommendations for Earth Science

  • Maximize HDF5/netCDF4 interoperability via API accessibility
  • Include Basic CF Attributes
  • Use CF "bounds" attributes
  • Verify CF compliance
  • Distinguish clearly between HDF and netCDF packing conventions
  • When to employ packing attributes
  • Mapping between ACDD and ISO
  • Make HDF5 files netCDF4-Compatible and CF-compliant within Groups
  • Include time dimension in grid structured data
  • Order dimensions to facilitate readability of grid structure datasets
  • Consider “balanced” chunking for 3-D datasets in grid structures
  • Include datum attributes for data in grid structures

Dataset Interoperability Recommendations for Earth Science: Part 2

  • Character set for user-defined group, dataset, and attribute names
  • Consistent units attribute value for variables across one data collection
  • Use the units attribute only for variables with physical units
  • Include time coordinate in swath structured data
  • Keep coordinate values in coordinate variables
  • Include Georeference Information with Geospatial Coordinates
  • Not-a-Number (NaN) Value
  • Standardize file extensions for HDF5/netCDF files
  • Ensure Granule's Filename Uniqueness Across Different Dataset Releases
  • Adopt Semantically Rich Dataset Release Identifiers
  • Date-Time Information in Granule Filenames

Last Updated: May 10, 2019 at 10:15 AM EDT