Heliophysics Integrated Observatory
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HELIO Primary Services

The primary HELIO services are used to address the questions that allow the user identify which data could be useful for their science use case.

The Heliophysics Event Catalogue and Heliophysics Feature Catalogue help the user identify interesting things to look at in the form of events and features. The Instrument Capabilities and Instrument Location Services, coupled with a propagation model, let the user determine whether the appropriate types of instruments were suitably located to make the required observations of phenomena as they propagate through the Solar System.

The Data Provider Access Service (coupled with the Unified Observing Catalogue) can then be used to locate and retrieve the data.

Heliophysics Event Catalogue (HEC)

The Heliophysics Event Catalogue contains a variety of event lists produced by a number of different organisations. The lists represent observations of events caused by different types of phenomena including flares, coronal mass ejections and other disturbances in the solar wind, effects on the Earth's environment, etc.

Because the HEC now contains around 70 event lists it is sometimes difficult to identify which are relevant to a science use case; we have therefore provided the ability to select lists of a particular type. For example, to see lists that are related to flares, click the "Flare" check box; to view all the lists, click the "Show all catalogues" check box.

XXXX The source of a list can be examined by following the "URL"; the "Info" button provides information about the purpose of the list and the list parameters.

We are always interested in adding more event lists to the HEC. If you know of other interesting lists please let us know.

Heliophysics Feature Catalogue (HFC)

The Heliophysics Feature Catalogue holds information derived by using feature recognition codes on images, etc. at various wavelengths. The features currently included in the catalogue are sunspots, active regions, filaments and coronal holes identified in solar images and type II and III radio bursts detected in time/frequency plots.

The HFC contains three different types/levels of information:

  1. Level I data includes the information derived from the image processing routines describing the location and outline of features.
  2. To produce the level II data, features detected in the level I data are tracked and the catalogue can be used to determine if a feature seen in one image is the same as the feature seen in subsequent image.
  3. The level III catalogue is derived from the level II data and shows where things have happened. For example, if a segment of filament disappears or a group of sunspots emerges. This catalogue is more analogous to an event catalogue and some of the data in the level III data is similar to lists in the HEC.

Data Evaluation Service (DES)

While the HEC contains around 70 event lists from different parts of the heliosphere, this does not necessarily provide the complete picture. There are no definitive event lists – all lists are based on an opinion of what constitutes an event. Also, some events are subtle – if you know when and where to look you might detect something that would be missed by automated techniques.

The Data Evaluation Service is designed to provide the user with the capability of examining time-series data and defining functions that can be used to identify events. A set of functions has been defined; the values of parameters that should be used are supplied as part of the call, as well as the time interval and instrument.

Context Service (CXS)

The Context Service is used to generate different types of plots that are used by the HELIO Front End (HFE) to assist the user. Currently the CXS generates plots of GOES light-curves and solar images over-plotted with the location of flares; the plots are generated on demand.

Needs references to and explnations about the UWS/CEA:


Instrument Capabilities Service (ICS)

The Instrument Capabilities Service describes the types of observations that can be made by more than 250 instruments; it also holds information about the characteristics of the associated observatories.

Note that the ICS describes all instruments that could be included in HELIO; not all will necessarily be available through the project.

Instrument Location Service (ILS)

The Instrument Location Service contains details of the locations of all main planetary objects in the solar system and of spacecraft that have travelled on a complex trajectory. The information is provided with a cadence of one value per day.

The ILS also contains a table of the dates of Key Events in the life of several spacecraft including launch, planetary flybys and insertion into orbit around the target object.

Unified Observing Catalogue (UOC)

The Unified Observing Catalogue is used in two different ways and the types of information associated with these are quite different:
  1. For (remote-sensing) instruments that observe the Sun with restricted fields-of-view, the UOC contains information about the observations and make it possible to filter data requests based on whether the instrument was observing the required target.
  2. Where there are problems accessing the observations from some instruments &ndash either because not all of them are on-line or because of complexities in the archive interface – the UOC contains the details of what is available and the URLs that should be used to access the data.

Entries in the UOC in the first category are used as part of the search process. Those in the second category are used by the DPAS in order to support access to certain instruments – that the DPAS should use the UOC is specified in the Provider Access Table (PAT).

Data Provider Access Service (DPAS)

The Data Provider Access Service provides integrated access to observations from a number of data archives and observatories. To date the DPAS supports access to more than 150 instruments from more than 40 observatories.

The DPAS is intended to isolate the user from the foibles of the providers and supports many access protocols, including http, ftp, Web Services, etc.

HELIO Enabling Services

Behind the scenes there are a number of capabilities that support the primary HELIO Services; these include the HELIO Processing Service (HPS), the HELIO Storage Service (HSS), the Semantic Mapping Service (SMS) and the Coordinate Transformation Service (CTS).

There are two other services that provide a central but more basic role: the HELIO Registry Service (HRS) and Community Interaction Service (CIS).

HELIO Registry Service (HRS)

The HELIO Registry Service contains

Community Interaction Service (CIS)

The Community Interaction Service contains


HELIO Processing Service (HPS)

The HELIO Processing Service contains

HELIO Storage Service (HSS)

The HELIO Storage Service contains

Semantic Mapping Service (SMS)

The Semantic Mapping Service contains

Coordinate Transformation Service (CTS)

The Coordinate Transformation Service contains

Useful info

The results can be viewed as a Web page or downloaded as a VOTable or text file.

Last updated: 21st April 2015