Data and Metadata


The creation and publishing of metadata, or "data about data," is an essential element of the Caro-COOPS data management system. Metadata summarizes information on where and when data were collected, what methods were used, and points of contact for archived data; and is then made available within centralized, searchable databases to foster data access and sharing. The diverse and distributed nature of coastal ocean observing systems calls for unique solutions to metadata development (see the "Meta-Door" section below). Caro-COOPS metadata is fully searchable via the link in the upper right hand corner of this page ("Metadata Search"), and is fully compliant with Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) standards.


Caro-COOPS is supporting the development of unique data management solutions for coastal ocean observing systems. For example, the "Meta-Door" second-generation online metadata entry tool is now available via the link below. This tool evolved from the "Cast-Net" initiative of the Southern Association of Marine Laboratories (SAML) and the Southeastern Universities Research Association (SURA) with funding from NSF EPSCoR. Development of the Cast-Net tool resulted from a cooperative effort among five regional sites: the Baruch Institute for Marine and Coastal Sciences at the University of South Carolina, Dauphin Island Sea Lab Alabama, the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium, the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography of the University System of Georgia and the University of Southern Mississippi.

The Cast-Net metadata tool was developed to provide a convenient and user-friendly mechanism for generating FGDC-compliant metadata. Increased and broad-based use of Cast-Net demonstrated the need for enhanced capabilities and more comprehensive capacities for data and system documentation. Meta-Door is a complete regeneration of the Cast-Net metadata tool designed to handle the needs of a broad range of contemporary users. Meta-Door resembles Cast-Net in appearance and functionality while providing an enhanced user driven file management system and an easier, more reliable application interface. It has been completely re-programmed to work with a relational database that will eventually allow for more sophisticated indexing services. Future versions of Meta-Door will allow users to incorporate additional metadata standards as new standards emerge and become widely used in the ocean coastal observing communities.

Meta-Door has been rebuilt from the ground up with Java Struts to be database- and OS-independent. New features include:

  • User administration with simplified registration and profile management
  • Additional metadata formatting options for review
  • Option to remove published metadata from ISite
  • Lightweight GIS for input of Geo-location information
  • User interface improvements, including collapsible form layout

Users may register and use the Meta-Door system for entering their metadata records at the following link.

Meta-Door TWiki website
Meta-Door listserv

Quality Control

From the readme.txt file listed with the datasets:
For the quality control variables( _qc), the levels correspond to the following:

Salinity: 30.0 ppt to 36.7 ppt
Currents: 0 cm/sec to 225 cm/sec
Water temperatures: 6.7 degrees C to 30.0 degrees C
Air temperature: 0 to 41 degrees C

Data which are within the accepted range limit = 1
Data which are below the accepted range limit = 2
Data which are above the accepted range limit = 3

Data & Metadata
Data Management

Metadata Search