Accessing and Sharing Data Using the CUAHSI Hydrologic Information System

David G. Tarboton, Utah State University
J. S. Horsburgh
T. L. Whiteaker
D. R. Maidment
I. Zaslavsky

Fall Meet. Suppl., Abstract C21A-0504 (Invited)


The Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc (CUAHSI) has a Hydrologic Information System (HIS) project, which is developing infrastructure to support the sharing of hydrologic data through web services and tools for data discovery, access and publication. Centralized data services support access to National Datasets such as the USGS National Water Information System (NWIS) and SNOTEL, in a standard way. Distributed data services allow users to establish their own server and publish their data through CUAHSI HIS web services. Once such a data service is registered within HIS Central, it becomes searchable and accessible through the centralized discovery and data access tools. The HIS is founded upon an information model for observations at stationary points that supports its data services. This is implemented as both XML and relational database schema for transmission and storage of data respectively. WaterML is the XML based data transmission model that underlies the machine to machine communications, while the Observations Data Model (ODM) is a relational database model for persistent data storage. Web services support access to hydrologic data stored in ODM and transmitted using WaterML directly from applications software such as Excel, MATLAB and ArcGIS that have Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) capability. A significant value of web services derives from the capability to use them from within a user's preferred analysis environment, rather than requiring a user to learn new software. This allows a user to work with data from national and academic sources, almost as though it was on their local disk. This poster will be computer-based with internet access for demonstration of HIS tools and functionality.