alize its CERES-specific information system to accommodate other types of data, but to do so would duplicate overall EOSDIS development efforts. It would also incur the risk of isolating the LaRC DAAC from the EOSDIS system, thereby making it more difficult for users to integrate data from the LaRC DAAC with data from other DAACs. Consequently, the panel's main recommendation is that the DAAC develop a transition plan to link its information systems with the ECS and keep a strong focus on the overall EOSDIS goals and ideals.

INTRODUCTION

Langley Research Center began processing Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE) data in 1985. The LaRC DAAC was formed in 1989 and serves the atmospheric science community, particularly those segments interested in Earth radiation budget, clouds, aerosols, and tropospheric chemistry (Box 4.1). Its current holdings include data from aircraft and satellite instruments and field campaigns.

In addition, the DAAC is currently processing data from the first CERES instrument, which was launched on the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) in November 1997. The CERES/TRMM data will increase the volume of the DAAC's holdings from 900 GB to 155 TB by the completion of the mission. Because the ECS was not ready in time for the TRMM launch, the DAAC developed the Langley TRMM Information System (LaTIS) from its existing information management system.

The DAAC is scheduled to receive data from several EOS era instruments over the next few years. These include two more CERES instruments, the Multi-angle Imaging Spectroradiometer (MISR) and Measurements of Pollution in the Troposphere (MOPITT), all on the AM-1 platform, and the Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment III (SAGE III) on the Russian Meteor 3M satellite. Incorporation of these data streams will increase the volume of the DAAC's holdings from 3 TB to about 1,300 TB by the completion of the mission, but the DAAC feels that scaling-up is less a data volume problem than a problem with the number and diversity of data sets and the ability to train staff to know enough about the data to help users. If allowed, the DAAC will expand the capacity and functionality of the LaTIS to accommodate these data streams, although this would tend to further isolate the LaRC DAAC from the EOSDIS system.

The Panel to Review the LaRC DAAC held its site visit on November 18–19, 1997. The panel subsequently updated its report through e-mail discussions with the DAAC manager in June through September 1998.

HOLDINGS

The LaRC DAAC has holdings in the areas of the Earth's radiation budget, clouds, aerosols, and tropospheric chemistry (Box 4.2). For example, the long-



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