The AVM scheme supports the cross-searching of collections of print-ready and screen-ready astronomical imagery rendered from telescopic observations (also known as ‘pretty pictures’). The scheme is compatible with the Adobe XMP specification, so the metadata can be embedded within common image formats such as JPEG, TIFF and PNG.
Such images can combine data acquired at different wavebands and from different observatories. While the primary intent is to cover data-derived astronomical images, there are broader uses as well. Specifically, the most general subset of this schema is also appropriate for describing artwork and illustrations of astronomical subject matter.
AVM is a proposed recommendation of the International Virtual Observatory Alliance and was last updated in 2011.
FITS is an image data file format for encoding astronomical data. The WCS (World Coordinate System) conventions map elements in data arrays to standard physical coordinates in the sky. FITS has provisions for image metadata encoded in an ASCII header at the beginning of files.
The technical specifications defined by the IVOA (International Virtual Observatory Alliance) enable interoperability between and the integration of astronomical archives across the world into an international virtual observatory. They include several data models that act as metadata schemas for particular data types: for example, photometry data, simulation data, space-time coordinates, spectral lines data, spectral data, observational data, and the physical parameter space of astronomical datasets.
These data models are under active development by the IVOA Data Modelling Working Group.
Additional recommendations have been made for metadata concepts and terms necessary for the discovery and the use of astronomical data collections and services.
The Standard for Documentation of Astronomical Catalogues is a set of conventions for archiving astronomical data. As well as path, filename and data format conventions, it also specifies how to construct a plain text description file for documenting the data files. It was developed as an alternative to FITS that would be more suited to archives, permit human inspection, and allow manipulation via standard Unix command-line tools.
SDAC was developed by CDS (Centre de Données astronomiques de Strasbourg). Version 2.0 is the most recent; it was released in February 2000.
An information model for describing the elements of the heliophysics data environment, and a set of resource types which can be used to describe data along with its scientific context, source, provenance, content and location. It is designed to support a federated data system where data may reside at different locations and may be seperated from the metadata which describes it. The preferred expression form is XML.
The Space Physics Archive Search and Extract (SPASE) effort is implemented by the SPASE Consortium which is composed of representatives of the international Heliophysics data community. The Current Release of the data model (2.2.2) was updated in October 2012.
An extension of FITS that enables data to be defined to specify physical, or world coordinates within each pixel in an image. The conventions were orignally proposed in 2002 then incorporated into the 3.0 release of the FITS standard.
A simulation extention to the SPASE data model.
Defines metadata terms and concepts necessary for discovery and use of astronomical data collections and services.
The extension is based on Dublin Core, but with astronomy-specific extensions. Resource Metadata are collected in resource "registries" that are populated and synchronized using the OAI-PMH (Protocol for Metadata Handling). Version 1.12, March 2007. Developed and maintained by IVOA Resource Registry Working Group and NVO Metadata Working Group
A set of metadata panels that can be added to Adobe Creative Suite 4 applications to allow AVM-compliant metadata to be entered directly into images.
The software that underlies the German Astrophysical Virtual Observatory (GAVO), packaged so that it can be used to set up other Virtual Observatory-compliant data centres.
A tool for publishing astronomical data files as online databases suitable for integration into the international Virtual Observatory.
A set of four tools for working with SDAC-compliant archives: acut can be used to edit text files in a columnar fashion; trcol removes or transforms columns from a text file; anafile verifies that data files conform to their description; tofits converts SDAC tables to FITS tables.
A web-based editor for generating SPASE descriptions.
The SPASE website's list of tools for working with SPASE metadata and the SPASE framework.
An initiative to provide a distributed, uniform interface to the data archives of Australia's major astronomical observatories, and to archives of astrophysical simulations, as part of the international Virtual Observatory.
CDS (Centre de Données astronomiques de Strasbourg/Strasbourg astronomical Data Centre) is a member of the ICSU World Data System, specializing in astronomical data and related information. Its VizieR catalogue system uses SDAC to organize data and metadata holdings.
ESA is an international organisation with 20 Member States that coordinates the financial and intellectual resources of it's members to facilitate space related programmes and activities. Image data is released using FITS for many missions.
A project to integrate and enable data analysis techniques over the astronomical archives of Europe, as part of the international Virtual Observatory.
The High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC) is the primary archive for NASA's (and other space agencies') missions dealing with electromagnetic radiation from extremely energetic phenomena ranging from black holes to the Big Bang.
The International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) is an organisation that debates and agrees to technical standards that are needed to make the Virtual Observatory possible. FITS is one of those standards.
Japan's independent administrative institution that handles research and development in space and aviation areas.
The National Space Science Data Center's registry of SPASE-described space science mission data.
The SPASE website's list of systems that use SPASE compliant metadata to enable search services.
The image gallery for the Spitzer Space Telescope employs AVM within its content management system, and all the images have AVM tags embedded within them.
Archive for STEREO telemetry, mission support data, and higher level instrument data and analysis software.
An initiative to integrate astronomical archives and provide associated research capabilities in the United States as part of the international Virtual Observatory.