Heliophysics ranges from the Sun to the extended Solar wind, including planetary high altitude environment (magnetosphere when it exists). A project funded by the European Community, HELIO, provided a new way to access heliophysics data (solar and plasma physics). It extended from 2009 to 2012 and now is fully operational to access data and get added values.
HELIO, the Heliophysics Integrated Observatory, is a Research Infrastructure funded under EC’s FP7 Capacities Specific Programme. It provides the heliophysics research community with an integrated e-infrastructure that has no equivalent anywhere else. The project objectives were as follows:
- To create a collaborative environment where scientists can discover, understand and model the connection between solar phenomena, interplanetary disturbances and their effects on the planets (esp. the Earth)
- To establish a consensus on standards for describing all heliophysical data and champion them within international standards bodies, e.g. the IVOA
- To develop new ways to interact with a virtual observatory that are more closely aligned with the way researchers wish to use the data
HELIO is based on a Service-Oriented architecture. For this purpose, HELIO developed a Front End, which facilitates the search for data, using series of search metadata services covering different domains (many Events and Features available; use of context information to refine selection); Services to identify and retrieve observations based on search results (knows which data are stored where and how to access them); Enabling services such as tools to find and track events/phenomena in 4D environment (i.e. including the propagation of phenomena). Services can be used individually or combined through workflow capability. Heliophysics Event Catalogue and Heliophysics Features Catalogue provide a specific access to information concerning phenomena that occur in the Solar system.
A semantic-driven approach is used to integrate data from different domains, based on ontology derived from existing data models. Thirteen partners from Europe and US were involved in this project.
In France, participants to HELIO were BASS2000, CDPP and MEDOC.