The ARM External Data Center (XDC) identifies sources and acquires data, called "external data", to augment the data generated within the program. The scientific need and the priorities for acquiring, processing and archiving the external data-streams are established by the science working groups and considers such factors as:
If this analysis determines that significant value to the ARM data users will be added, the XDC will develop an automated process to acquire the data from the data provider, and reformat the data as necessary into an ARM-compatible data format. The processed data and the native format data are sent to the ARM permanent archive at ORNL.
The External Data Center collects and processes a wide variety of data including numerical weather prediction model output, 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.
The XDC is responsible for two instrument systems: 12 automated Cimel Sunphotometers (CPSHOTs) and a network of fixed SuomiNet Global Positioning System (SUOMIGPS) receivers. The mentorship responsibilities include the coordination of instrument calibration, data quality assessment and monitoring, maintenance, upgrades, troubleshooting, deployment, and instrument development.