Data Management Plans

Each experiment performed at Jefferson lab represents a significant investment not only to the groups working on the experiment but also the funding agencies. It is prudent then to ensure that this investment is protected so that future researchers may not only take advantage of the final physics results but also have access to the data that produced those results in a form allowing data processing to be repeated in the light of new techniques or insights. 

By far the largest volume of data generated by an experiment is the raw data containing the digitized readout from the data acquisition system. However, the raw data is only meaningful in the context defined by the metadata that is recorded as the data is taken, this includes accelerator parameters, operating conditions and calibration of the detector, operator logs and much more. Since all of this data is stored in digital form it is also important to archive documentation, the software to read the data formats and even the software used to process the data. By far the safest course is to attempt to preserve as much of the information and software that is available. To be sure there will be points of diminishing return and, case by case, a decision on what is not worth keeping must be made.

Such is the importance of the preservation of data, that the funding agencies are asking grant applicants to provide a plan for how they will manage the data from their experiment.

With this in mind the Scientific Computing group (SCI) in IT division has written a JLab Data Management Plan that broadly outlines the steps taken to preserve data. Based on this plan the Experimental Nuclear Physics division management has prepared data management plans for each of the four experiment halls. Each hall specific plan takes into account differences in the ways in which the halls operate their online and offline data processing. These plans can be referred to by principle investigators when preparing their own data management plan and should much simplify that process.

Data_Management_Plan_Hall-A.pdf65.18 KB
Data_Management_Plan_Hall-B.pdf69.55 KB
Data_Management_Plan_Hall-C.pdf70.08 KB
Data_Management_Plan_Hall_D_v2.pdf236.11 KB
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