Getting OER seafloor exploration data into the Cloud

Barry Eakins, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, Boulder, CO, United States and Mashkoor Malik, NOAA, Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, Silver Spring, MD, United States
Recognizing the recent advances and efficiencies achieved by incorporating Cloud storage and computing into scientific data workflows, NOAA’s Office of Ocean Exploration and Research (OER) has set a goal of having all of its seafloor exploration data in the Cloud within the next five years. OER, in partnership with the Global Foundation for Ocean Exploration (GFOE), collects data onboard the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer using a variety of oceanographic and meteorological sensors. These data are currently curated on physical servers at NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI). OER, GFOE and NCEI are developing the know-how, tools and procedures necessary for preparing and hosting OER data in the Cloud. Several challenges and their mitigation are being considered, including: migrating existing data workflows to the Cloud; learning how to actively manage data in the Cloud; maintaining efficient data discovery and access; and adhering to NOAA data security policies. Leveraging of Cloud-native technologies, including artificial intelligence and machine-learning-enabled data analysis, will require selecting the best cost models for long-term sustainability and coordinating transition of Cloud services to operations. We will present our initial design of this OER Cloud Data System and its components, and solicit feedback on how it might be improved.