Paper No. 6
Presentation Time: 9:25 AM


WALKER, J. Douglas1, ASH, Jason1, BOWRING, James F.2, BOWRING, S.a.3 and MCLEAN, Noah M.1, (1)Department of Geology, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045, (2)Department of Computer Science, College of Charleston, JC Long 207, Charleston, SC 29424, (3)Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139,

While there have been great advances in the accuracy and precision of geochronological determinations over the past decades, similar progress has lagged in the management of these data. Complete and accurate data reporting of geochronology data is critical to understanding and using these data. For that reason, we have been developing the Geochron database ( under the IEDA effort ( We describe below some aspects of system development focusing on efforts related to U-Pb ID-TIMS.

Data reporting requires not just submitting the reduced data used to compute dates, but also documenting the necessary metadata to ensure the quality, understanding, and possible reuse of the analyses. Metadata includes typical parameters such as decay constants used and laboratory, but increasingly for high-precision U-Pb measurements, such aspects as tracer and parent element isotopic composition are becoming critical to document. The barrier to incorporation of these data has been that such reporting is not in the workflow of the typical geochronologist and there has been no place to store and serve such information. We are addressing these issues by developing the Geochron database to interact with data reduction programs (in this case U-Pb_Redux – available at that capture all needed metadata. Because this is done directly from the reduction package through a limited number of additional steps, it fits well into the scientist’s workflow. Data and metadata are transferred and stored using a well-documented XML schema. In this way, the data can be retrieved directly back into U-Pb_Redux, and the full set of data reduction parameters are preserved. Data and datasets can be archived for long-term storage at the EarthChem Library operated by IEDA. Datasets receive a DOI that allows them to be linked to publications. Data reporting requirements have been established through community outreach working with the EARTHTIME initiative. In addition, the collaboration of IEDA with EARTHTIME via the U-Pb_Redux and Geochron combination can serve as an exemplar for the nascent EarthCube effort.