Earth Science Informatics

, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp 67–73

SPASE 2.0: a standard data model for space physics

Research Article

DOI: 10.1007/s12145-010-0053-4

Cite this article as:
King, T., Thieman, J. & Roberts, D.A. Earth Sci Inform (2010) 3: 67. doi:10.1007/s12145-010-0053-4


SPASE—for Space Physics Archive Search and Extract—is a group with a charter to promote collaboration and sharing of data for the Space Plasma Physics community. A major activity is the definition of the SPASE Data Model which defines the metadata necessary to describe resources in the broader heliophysics data environment. The SPASE Data Model is primarily a controlled vocabulary with hierarchical relationships and with the ability to form associations between described resources. It is the result of many years of effort by an international collaboration (see to unify and improve on existing Space and Solar Physics data models. The genesis of the SPASE group can be traced to 1998 when a small group of individuals saw a need for a data model. Today SPASE has a large international participation from many of the major space research organizations. The design of the data model is based on a set of principles derived from evaluation of the existing heliophysics data environment. The development guidelines for the data model are consistent with ISO-2788 (expanded in ANSI/NISO Z39.19) and the administration for the data model is comparable to that described in the ISO standards ISO-11179 and ISO-20943. Since the release of version 1.0 of the data model in 2005, the model has undergone a series of evolutions. SPASE released version 2.0 of its data model in April 2009. This version presents a significant change from the previous release. It includes the capability to describe a wider range of data products and to describe expert annotations which can be associated with a resource. Additional improvements include an enhanced capability to describe resource associations and a more unified approach to describing data products. Version 2.0 of the SPASE Data Model provides a solid foundation for continued integration of worldwide research activities and the open sharing of data.


SPASEData modelOntologyVocabularyHeliophysicsSpace physicsStandard

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Geophysics and Planetary PhysicsUniversity of California, Los AngelesLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Code 690.1GreenbeltUSA
  3. 3.NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Code 672GreenbeltUSA