National Virtual Data System

KeyLogic helped produce for NESDIS one of the nation’s first governmental e-commerce sites, as well as one of the earliest web-enabled Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

KeyLogic Helps Create NOAA’s Pioneering NVDS

The Client: The National Environmental Satellite Data and Information Service (NESDIS) is an office within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The mission of NESDIS is to archive and disseminate the nation's oceanic, climatic, and geophysical data and information products.

The Challenge: NESDIS has three data centers — the National Oceanic Data Center (NODC), the National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC),and the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). In the late 1990s, when KeyLogic, as a subcontractor, began work on the project, those facilities had similar operations, but worked separately, using disparate business methods. At the time, NOAA still used an array of “stovepipe” systems based on pre-web user requirements. A common, web-based system was needed to better integrate those legacy systems. The prime challenge, then, was making the centers operationally efficient, allowing their user communities to more easily interact, share information, and collaborate.

The Solution: To meet NESDIS’ goals, KeyLogic personnel helped create the National Virtual Data System (NVDS). For five years, KeyLogic personnel supported NVDS’ development following a Standards Based Architecture (SBA) IT planning approach. In the process, KeyLogic professionals helped produce for NESDIS one of the nation’s first governmental e-commerce sites, as well as one of the earliest web-enabled Geographic Information Systems (GIS). In addition, they developed software that automates geo-referencing of scientific data into a relational database. NVDS provides efficiencies in meeting NESDIS’s core mission, offering additional capabilities for handling workflow, interrelating data and conducting e-commerce.

The Result: The key benefit was a common way of doing business among the three datacenters and leveraging the data for access and dissemination. This improved workflow and communication, which in turn encouraged better data sharing and collaboration among the data centers. Other benefits include:


  • Creative Use of Information. Customers reported that after the implementation of NESDIS, they were able to access and use information they received in new and dynamic ways. The GIS, for example, encourages spatial data analysis, opening up broad avenues for interpretation.
  • Improved Operations. Because the system is online, NESDIS personnel and other end users have a more real-time view of oceanic, climatic, and geophysical data as it is archived. NVDS also provides NOAA with greater online product availability, streamlined operations, improved data quality, an expanded customer base, and increased user satisfaction
  • Cost Efficiencies. NOAA saw cost efficiencies by leveraging modern IT and GIS technologies and providing access to numerous information products within the NVDS web portal.

 To learn more about how KeyLogic’s data management solutions can help your agency succeed, please contact us today at 888.204.9649.

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