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- Archiving Overview from Start to End 101- The Review
Archiving Overview from Start to End 101- The Review
Apr 06, 2022 (by Beatrice Mueller)
Part of a series on Archiving Tips
Awesome! Your hard work payed off, and you successfully submitted all your data with the necessary documentation to PDS. You are all done, and can now concentrate on your next project!
Sorry, not so fast. Before your data can be archived, it will have to be reviewed, not just for PDS4 compliance (which has been done by your trusted PDS staff), but also for scientific accuracy and usefulness.
PDS Review: The final step before your data can be archived in PDS.
Let’s step back a little.
Why does my archive package have to be reviewed?
One major thing to remember is that PDS is not a data dump but an archive. There are higher expectations and standards in place. PDS archives data from planetary missions as well as from individual data providers. Planetary missions take a lot of effort from planning until data acquisition and deliver a lot of data for the science community. These data represent an enormous investment and need to be preserved for current and future generations of researchers and the public. Peer review ensures that the data are not only usable and scientifically sound right now but also in the future, and that enough documentation is available.
Why do we need these data in the future? Will we not get better data as technologies evolve?
Yes, hopefully, but of course bodies (large and small) in the solar system change. How did e.g. Jupiter look 20 years ago? Was that feature in the atmosphere at the same location as now? Let’s have a look at the archived data. We found the data but we do not understand how it was acquired, what was done to it and we can’t even read the format. Another example is that new and better techniques will be available in the future and data can be reprocessed and new science can be teased out. Or a new phenomenon is detected, and we never looked at previous data for that. This is why standards and peer review are an integral part of the archiving process.
How does the PDS Review Process work?
The PDS review for your submitted archive package is not very different from any other peer review, be it of a funding proposal or a manuscript for example.
Your archive package will be reviewed by PDS experts and scientific experts from your field. How exactly the review happens differes from Node to Node. At the SBN Asteroid/Dust Subnode, we have at least two scientific reviewers who not only look at the scientific feasibility and usability of the archive package but also comment on PDS metadata and documentation. The lead reviewer is asked to review that data and also use the data in a scientific inquiry of their choosing. Both reviewers will submit a written report which will be shared with the provider before a meeting where the results are discussed.
The meeting will end in a list of liens and recommendations for the data provider. Liens are things that have to be resolved by the provider (e.g. more documentation, information, additional supporting data, error fixes).Recommendations are just suggestions which could improve the archive package but do not have to be done if the providers chooses not to. Once the provider resolves all the liens and they are checked by PDS personnel, the archive package will be officially archived in PDS.
Now, you are really done, at least for this archive package. And as a bonus, the reference (nowadays a DOI) to the archive package will be sent to ADS where it will show up as a refereed publication!