North Temperate Lakes Metadata System

The North Temperate Lakes LTER Metadata Management System Summary

The North Temperate Lakes LTER site (NTL) manages most of their data and metadata in a relational database. Applications and scripts drive the data insertion process. Several methods allow users to query, view and download metadata and data. Rich metadata is offered both as raw EML and reading friendly formatted text on NTL's website.

LTER sites with similar management systems

  • some similarities : BNZ, SEV
  • potential synergies : MCM, PAL, CCE, MCR

The North Temperate Lakes Detailed

Most of the data collected by NTL reside an Oracle database. Some data are archived in text format. NTL spatial data are stored on file systems. Data are entered, updated and maintained in the Oracle database using scripts and applications on a Sun workstation as well as through use of an application installed on networked Windows workstations. Some data are entered into the Oracle database directly through a locally installed web application. Data from sensors on lake buoys are uploaded automatically via wireless serial spread spectrum radio to a file server and then automatically uploaded to the Oracle database by a custom application. Data from the Oracle database are made available for viewing and/or downloading over a network connection by several methods.

Each NTL online data set has associated metadata online in text file and EML formats.

The metadata for the non-spatial data are stored in the Oracle database and drive the dynamic database application in the data catalog, allowing forms for querying to be generated dynamically for each data set that is maintained in the Oracle database and provided in the catalog.

A number of different quality-control mechanisms have been established. Data sets have a system of flags to indicate quality conditions such as non-standard routine or equipment used. Database triggers perform range checks on data from the automated sensors on lake buoys that are being captured in the database in near-real time. Information management staff and technicians perform visual screening of data.

EML Status:

  • Completion: All metadata is available in EML.
  • Richness : Most EML documents are described to the attribute level (level 5)
  • QA/QC : There are mechanisms to ensure quality of metadata and data.