--> Abstract: CHRONOS: Transforming Earth History Research By Seamlessly Integrating Stratigraphic Data And Tools, by Cinzia Cervato, Doug Fils, Geoff Bohling, Pat Diver, Doug Greer, Josh Reed, and Xiaoyun Tang; #90067 (2007)

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CHRONOS: Transforming Earth History Research By Seamlessly Integrating Stratigraphic Data And Tools


Cinzia Cervato1, Doug Fils1, Geoff Bohling2, Pat Diver3, Doug Greer4, Josh Reed1, and Xiaoyun Tang1. (1) Iowa State University, 253 Science I, Ames, IA 50011, (2) Kansas Geological Survey, Lawrence, KS 66047, (3) DivDat Consulting, Wesley, AR 72773, (4) San Diego SuperComputer Center, La Jolla, CA 92093 [email protected]


Geologic time is the intellectual theme that connects a wide variety of research endeavors in geoscienceÑmissing is the corresponding cyberinfrastructure that allows the resources of all these endeavors to be pooled. CHRONOS's purpose, emerging from community workshops dating back to 2001, is to transform Earth history research by seamlessly integrating stratigraphic databases and tools into a virtual online stratigraphic record. This online record accelerates and democratizes research by giving more minds access to more data and faster. This presentation will give a broad overview of CHRONOSÕs mission and goals.


CHRONOS is a team of geoscientists and information technology specialists creating a cyberinfrastructure that delivers open access to a global federation of Earth history databases, tools, and services, thus providing:


á   For academic, government, and industrial scientistsÑaccess to multiple, disparate databases on Earth history; data evaluation and conversion services; and powerful analytical tools.

á   For autonomous databases, affiliated science initiatives, and data and tool contributorsÑa larger user community, greater visibility and acknowledgment, and access to tools and best practices, without the cost and burden of reproducing interoperability.

á   For educators, students, and policy makersÑa convenient source of Earth history data, visualization tools, expert opinion, and educational materials.


The continued enhancement of the CHRONOS federation of resources will foster unprecedented cohesiveness within the geoscience community along with a growing pool of geoinformatics specialists. This will result in improved public awareness and appreciation of the knowledge that underpins the hypotheses addressing contemporary issues such as climate change, evolution and extinction, and fossil-fuel inventories.


Listening to countless discussions of the emerging system, chronos hears three pervasive practical concernsÑconvenience, quality control, and cost containmentÑfrom which some best practices emerge:

á   CHRONOSÕs architecture is flexible, open, and searchable;

á   Users have a choice of data-entry pathways;

á   The linked databases maintain autonomy;

á   CHRONOS integrates time-stratigraphic;

á   Tools and data services are developed together;

á   Costs are distributed and shared with research opportunities.


CHRONOSÕs three organizing and operational initiatives provide the framework around which all of our tasks are managed. Each will be accomplished through the major activities identified with it:


1.   Build Cyberinfrastructure: To conceive, build, and support the robust system of integrated databases, tools, visualizations, and services essential to realize the CHRONOS vision;

2.   Build and Involve the CHRONOS Community: To foster the growth of the CHRONOS community by actively promoting the open participation of diverse groups of users, data providers, and other geoinformatics efforts;

3.   Give Access to Educational Activities: Create an excitement for Earth history and geologic time through the implementation of human-computer interactions.


AAPG Search and Discover Article #90067©2007 AAPG Mid-Continent Section Meeting, Wichita, Kansas