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Contribute Data to Synoptic

Synoptic Data is a Public Benefit Corporation building on the legacy of MesoWest that was developed over the past two decades at the University of Utah. Synoptic Data facilitates the efficient exchange of data available from diverse sources to allow government agencies, businesses, individuals, and communities to rapidly and equitably access environmental information for use in their daily activities, operations, and decision making.

Synoptic strives to foster a collaborative exchange of environmental information that helps sustain the mission of data providers. Data providers control whether they prefer their data to be available to all potential users or limited to specific user communities. Data distributed by Synoptic undergo a battery of automated tests that help data providers know if sensor maintenance may be required.

All publicly accessible data sent to Synoptic Data will also appears on all MesoWest products and web pages. The same data ingest system is used.

How do I provide data to Synoptic?

If you are interested in providing real-time observations to Synoptic Data, there are several options:

1) I have a personal weather station, and I would like to make my real-time observations available to Synoptic Data.

Synoptic Data can most easily access personal weather stations if they are part of the Citizen Weather Observing Program (CWOP). The National Weather Service El Paso, TX has put together very useful guides (linked here) on how to select CWOP-compatible weather station equipment, site the equipment, and configure hardware and software so that the data are transmitted to the CWOP system. Once the real-time data are in the CWOP system, Synoptic Data has access to it with no additional work required.

If you have enabled a weather station in CWOP, and can see the data in the CWOP system but not in Synoptic Data, feel free to contact us and we can investigate if there are any issues with getting the real-time data.

2) I manage data collection for multiple weather stations, and I wish to make the real-time observations available to Synoptic Data.

Data providers can share their data with Synoptic Data in many different ways. Our goal is to simplify the data transmission process as much as possible. To start, feel free to contact us with some information on your assets and which transfer method(s) might work best for your system. Even if your preferred method isn’t listed below, Synoptic Data would be happy to discuss other potential ways to get your real-time observations flowing.

In order to add assets to Synoptic Data, the following minimum metadata (data about the metadata) is required:

  • Station Name

    • Abbreviated and/or full name (ex. KHOU - Houston, Houston Hobby Airport)

  • Geographic Coordinates

    • Latitude and Longitude

    • Elevation above sea level

We will attempt to use station identifiers you define as long as they don’t conflict with one of the over 50,000 stations in our databases (to check our inventory yourself, use our Explore Tool). We also need to know how the data are reported:

  • Variable Types

  • Units

  • Reporting Frequency

    • Regular Interval Reporting (ex. every 5 minutes, daily)

    • Event Driven

a) Data Pull Procedures

Synoptic Data can develop scheduled pull mechanisms that query real-time data from accessible data repositories (HTTP, HTTPS, FTP, SFTP, etc.) your organization might host or maintain. Synoptic Data can access the data files themselves, the output of developed API services, or other forms of data depending on what your organization may prefer.

b) Data Push Procedures

If your organization prefers to send the real-time data, Synoptic Data can do so. Data ingest servers have been configured to accept routine FTP, SFTP, and SCP pushes of data files. To utilize one of these methods, Synoptic Data will need to create an account for you on one of the ingest servers. Synoptic Data also has an actively running Local Data Manager (LDM) server for those entities who may wish to use that as a data push mechanism.

c) Campbell Scientific Data Logger Access

Synoptic Data operates a 24/7 Campbell Scientific LoggerNet Server, which can access Campbell data loggers reachable via an IP/hostname and port number. If desired, Synoptic Data can set up procedures to collect and immediately process new observations directly from data loggers themselves, which eliminates the intermediate steps of collecting and then sending the data. Synoptic Data would work with your organization on selecting a proper data collection schedule so that power and communications costs are considered.

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