NATIONAL GEOTHERMAL DATA SYSTEM: AN EXEMPLAR OF OPEN ACCESS TO DATA
The prototype data system currently includes multiple data nodes, and nationwide data online and available to the public, indexed through a single catalog under construction at http://search.geothermaldata.org. Data from state geological surveys and partners includes more than 5 million records online, including 1.48 million well headers (oil and gas, water, geothermal), 732,000 well logs, and 314,000 borehole temperatures and is growing rapidly. There are over 250 Web services and another 138 WMS (Web Map Services) registered in the system as of August, 2013. Additional data record is being added by companion projects run by Boise State University, Southern Methodist University, and the USGS. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory is managing the Geothermal Data Repository, an NGDS node that will be a clearinghouse for data from hundreds of DOE-funded geothermal projects.
NGDS is built on the US Geoscience Information Network (USGIN) data integration framework, which is a joint undertaking of the USGS and the Association of American State Geologists (AASG). NGDS is fully compliant with the White House Executive Order of May 2013, requiring all federal agencies to make their data holdings publicly accessible online in open source, interoperable formats with common core and extensible metadata.
The National Geothermal Data System is being designed, built, deployed, and populated primarily with grants from the US Department of Energy, Geothermal Technologies Office. To keep this operational system sustainable after the original implementation will require four core elements: continued serving of data and applications by providers; maintenance of system operations; a governance structure; and an effective business model. Each of these presents a number of challenges currently under consideration.