Chapter 13. LASCO Data Access and Publication Policies

The LASCO data access and publication policies are intended to encourage the active participation of the space science community. The image data will be archived at the four consortium institutions (NRL, MPAe, LAS, and UB). In addition to the images themselves, catalogs of information about the images will also be available, maintained by a data base management system which can be searched to help the user find the particular images needed for analysis. Both the catalogs and the images may be accessed by computer from an investigator's home institution.

There are several classes of potential LASCO scientific investigators. First are the members of the consortium institutions who produced the LASCO instrument. Next are the official co- investigators and associated scientists of the original LASCO proposal. Finally, there are the general members of the scientific community (guests), including scientists associated with other SOHO instruments, who would like to participate in using the LASCO data. This chapter describes the SOHO data access policy, the LASCO data access policy, and the LASCO publication policy.

13.1 SOHO Data Access Policy

The SOHO scientific program has issued the following guidelines related to individual experiment data:

  • The SOHO experiments will be operated in a coordinated manner designed to collect a comprehensive data set on problems defined by the SOHO Science Working Team.

  • In order to enhance scientific observations and scientific return, data will be shared among the observers at the Experiment Operations Facility (EOF) and the European SOHO Data Archive to aid in the planning of future observations, and for quick analysis of current observations.

  • Synoptic data will be distributed to all the PI teams one month after collection. These data are defined in the SOHO Operations Plan, and consist of a daily representative image from each of the imaging instruments, time series averages from particle experiments, and catalogs of data from all of the experiments.

  • The PI teams retain exclusive rights to publish their own data for one year after collection. Thus, data made available by another experiment for planning purposes, as well as for the synoptic data, are not to be used in publications without the consent of the experiment PI.

  • The PIs are responsible for establishing analysis policies and procedures for coordinated analyses utilizing their instrument's data.

13.2 LASCO Data Access Policy

The LASCO data access policy incorporates the SOHO concepts outlined above. Access to data from LASCO will be provided during the mission to all SOHO instruments as necessary to enable planning for future observations, thus enhancing the scientific return from SOHO. However, data provided for this purpose may not be used for independent individual analyses, to avoid uncontrolled overlap with existing projects. Thus, the policy on access to LASCO data will differ for operational purposes and analysis purposes.

13.2.1 Operations Access

SOHO experimenter operations scientists located at the EOF/EAF may access recent, uncalibrated images from the LASCO instrument for planning future observations. Recent data will be available on LASCO workstations located at the EOF, and may be accessed directly. For data older than a few days (3-4 days), the data may not be available from the EOF workstation, but will be available from the LASCO archive located at NRL. The LASCO team will provide an image for the daily summary data distribution planned by ESA to all the PI teams. The summary data will be very useful for planning synoptic studies. Note that the summary data will also be available to the general scientific community on the network.

Data obtained for operational planning, or in the daily summary distribution, may not be used for independent analysis or publication within the one year exclusive period.

13.2.2 Analysis Access

Complete archives of LASCO observations and processing software will be available at the four consortium scientific institutions. The LASCO team will take full advantage of electronic communication to allow easy access to the data, and to facilitate scientific cooperation. Access to the archive is controlled by a data base management system. There are three levels of access: catalog, browse image, and full data. Anyone with INTERNET access may use the catalogs, and any information that has been declared public. A registered user of the LASCO data base management system can also access the browse images, which are reduced resolution images, but which can be used for quick browsing through all of the data. Registration is essentially open to anyone. In order to access full data, a user must first submit an analysis proposal, consisting of an abstract, a list of co-investigators, and a list of required images. This procedure must be followed by all investigators, including consortium scientists, to maintain the coherence of the total analysis effort. After an analysis proposal has been submitted and approved, the proposal PI and co- investigators will be able to access the requested image data sets. Approved analysis proposals will be publicly available through the data base management system.

Each approved analysis proposal by a non-consortium scientist (official LASCO co-investigators and guests) will be assigned a LASCO consortium co-investigator to participate in the investigation. This co-investigator will act as an on-site contact/advocate for the guest scientists, serve as their guide to the LASCO data base management system, and participate in the scientific analysis. This direct participation is meant to facilitate data access, and reduce the inherent frustration of using unfamiliar data, particularly for the novice LASCO data user. More experienced guest scientists should be more autonomous, and the LASCO consortium co-investigator participation will be concerned more with the scientific analysis.

13.3 Publication Policy

To ensure scientific coordination and coherence in the analysis of the LASCO observations, especially in its early phases, the data access and publication policies will be supervised by an oversight committee, and administered by a LASCO data scientist appointed by the committee. The LASCO Executive Committee that has advised and assisted the PI in the hardware development phase will act as the oversight committee. The Executive Committee will consist of the PI, the Program scientist, and a representative from each of the four consortium institutions. The PI, or the Program scientist in his absence, will act as chairperson. The Executive Committee will establish policies relating to the use of LASCO data and the publication of papers utilizing LASCO data. The committee may change these policies as needed to reflect new conditions. An attempt will always be made to reach consensus on decisions. However, if consensus cannot be reached, the PI has the responsibility and authority to resolve disputes. The committee will meet as frequently as necessary to perform its role.

The Executive Committee will appoint the LASCO data scientist. Since the duties of this position will be demanding, the position is intended to rotate among the various LASCO co-investigators. The LASCO data scientist will be responsible for implementing the decisions of the committee. Any disputes arising from decisions made by the LASCO data scientist will be resolved by the committee. The data scientist will be free to refer especially controversial issues to the oversight committee immediately. In the event of a personal conflict of interest, he/she will recuse himself/herself and also refer the issue to the oversight committee.

13.3.1 Categories of Publications

A number of potential types of publications can be envisioned. There will probably be some overlap between the examples listed below, but the purpose of this suggested classification is to help the potential LASCO investigator to understand the rationale in the discussion of authorship which follows. LASCO publications may include:

LASCO Instrument/System Technical Details
This category includes system and subsystem descriptions and/or performance characteristics. It includes both hardware and non-hardware systems. It also includes the individual telescopes.

LASCO Scientific Capabilities
This category includes papers which describe the scientific capabilities of LASCO.

Initial Observational Results
These are the initial journal papers that present the first LASCO observational results in a given science area.

Major Observational Results
This category includes publications on those LASCO observations which are recognized as major new observational discoveries. The point is that the discovery was really the result of the observational capabilities of the LASCO instrument, to which a large number of people made significant contributions.

General Observational Results
This category is for those papers that report LASCO observational results that do not fall into either of the first two categories.

Interpretative Results
This category is for those papers whose major emphasis is on the interpretation of previously published observations. Additional new observations which support the interpretations may be included.

Invited Papers and Talks
This category includes invited presentations at professional meetings and any resulting published paper, and invited papers such as review articles.

Collaborative Papers
This category includes those papers that are prepared in collaboration with other SOHO instrumenters, SOHO guest investigators, guest scientists, LASCO co-investigators, etc.

IAU Circulars
This category includes those announcements of comets, etc., that are made as IAU circulars.

Press Releases
This category includes the announcement of LASCO observations to the press. It can include the announcement of a major discovery. It does not include a press release that may be associated with a paper presented at a scientific meeting. In all cases, the source of the data must be cited with acknowledgments of the ESA/NASA joint mission and the role of the four consortium institutions. A sample attribution follows: "These coronal images were obtained by the Large Angle Spectrometric Coronagraph instrument (LASCO), constructed by a consortium consisting of the Naval Research Laboratory (Washington DC, USA), the Max-Planck Institute for Aeronomy (Lindau, Germany), the Laboratoire d'Astronomie Spatiale (Marseille, France), and the Space Research Group at the University of Birmingham (Birmingham, United Kingdom). LASCO is one of a complement of instruments on the ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory satellite."

13.3.2 Authorship Guidelines

The lead author on a paper generally should be the individual primarily responsible for the scientific analysis of the observations and the preparation of the results for publication. For some publications, several persons may make major contributions, or different individuals may play the dominant role in different phases of the analysis (and in such situations, the lead authorship could rotate if two or more papers are to be prepared). This is the normal type of authorship question which arises with any multi-authored publication, and is settled by mutual agreement. However, with publications using data produced by an instrument with a large experimenter group, an additional consideration arises: how to be fair in attributing scientific credit to the individuals who made the instrument possible in the first place. This section presents guidelines for appropriate authorship, using the publication classification scheme given previously.

An early general paper describing the LASCO instrument and its scientific capabilities will be written by the principal investigator as lead author, with contributions from the consortium co-investigators. This paper will serve as a framework for publishing more detailed subsystem descriptions and subsystem scientific descriptions in additional papers.

The publication of papers describing subsystem performance is encouraged, to document in the open literature the LASCO experiment technical achievements. Such papers should be written by the lead individual for the particular subsystem, and should include coauthors who shared in the subsystem development effort. The coauthors may or may not be required to actually contribute to the paper. The accomplishments of the engineering personnel and skilled technicians in designing, developing, and testing a particular subsystem should be acknowledged and appropriately recognized.

Papers describing the LASCO scientific capabilities should be written by the lead consortium scientist responsible for developing the portion of the system being described. The papers should include coauthors who shared in the development effort of the subsystem. In certain cases, contractor institutions provided significant assistance to the LASCO personnel, and this should be acknowledged as appropriate. The authorship of these papers will be arrived at on a consensus basis, with the principal investigator and oversight committee resolving any conflicts.

For papers describing initial results or major new observational discoveries in the sense defined previously, co-authorship rights may be extended to key LASCO development personnel, and to other consortium members who have significantly contributed to the operations, observations, analysis, or interpretation. Lead authorship may be assigned on the basis of contribution to the overall instrument or subsystem critical to the discovery. In such cases, however, the lead author should play a role, not necessarily dominant, in the data analysis effort, and have primary responsibility for editing the paper.

On some guest investigator proposals and resulting publications, the LASCO data scientist may recommend that official LASCO co-investigators or consortium members be added as part of the guest investigator team and as co-authors, for consistency with the LASCO publication policy, and for the inclusion and recognition of key individuals in the LASCO development. Several LASCO consortium team members will be given special recognition due to their major contributions during the development of the LASCO instrument, data analysis system, and mission operations system. These team members may be added as co-authors for selected papers. It is always best to discuss these aspects as early as possible in any guest investigator analysis.

Interpretive papers, which as defined previously do not present major new observational discoveries, shall include only those consortium team members who have made significant contributions to the interpretation or related analysis. Such co-authors on papers describing observational results should make significant contributions to a publication, and should fully understand the results.

Initial papers describing results obtained during major observational campaigns should include an official LASCO co- investigator or consorium member responsible for obtaining the results as a co-author or lead author. Additionally, if a particular individual went to a great deal of trouble to arrange the observations, he/she should be included as a co-author.

Invited talks at major scientific meetings may perhaps have a single formal author, but if a talk presents the work of a large group, this should be clearly acknowledged.

Professional courtesy should be utilized in selecting lead and co-authors of all scientific papers at all times.

13.3.3 Internal Review

All papers to be submitted for publication should first be submitted to the LASCO data scientist, by computer or by paper copy. These papers will be made available to various members of the LASCO team for review. Reviewer comments should be sent via e- mail or letter to the first author of the paper, and also to the LASCO data scientist. Depending on the nature of the comments, the LASCO data scientist, in consultation with the lead author, may recommend the paper be changed to accommodate the particular concerns. Invited talks at major scientific meetings should also be submitted by title, authors, and abstract to the LASCO data scientist, in order to keep track of LASCO invitations and to alert the LASCO group to planned major presentations. In addition, any resulting paper would go through the normal review process.

Scientific results heavily dependent on an accurate photometric or other calibration of the experiment would be expected to receive serious review, particularly early in the mission. This review and feedback process is intended to avoid invalid results reaching the open literature by assuring a wide circulation of the paper prior to publication. To avoid an undue burden on the author, all comments must be made within four weeks of receipt of the paper by the LASCO data scientist.

After the paper has been submitted for publication, the paper will be available from the LASCO data base management system.

13.3.5 Publication of unauthorized material

In the event of an unauthorized paper reaching publication, the LASCO data scientist and/or oversight committee will impose penalties ranging from barring access to certain data for a certain period of time, to loss of all data access privileges.

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