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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Mayaguez, Puerto Rico » Tropical Crops and Germplasm Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #368031

Research Project: Conservation and Utilization of Tropical and Subtropical Tree Fruit, Cacao and Bamboo Genetic Resources

Location: Tropical Crops and Germplasm Research

Title: Release of Climate Database Application 1.0

item RIOS, CARLOS - US Department Of Agriculture (USDA)
item Goenaga, Ricardo

Submitted to: Internet Web Page
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/6/2019
Publication Date: 9/17/2019
Citation: Rios, C., Goenaga, R.J. 2019. Release of Climate Database Application 1.0. Internet Web Page. V.1..

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: With the help of the Internet, large amounts of weather data are accessible to researchers around the world. These datasets, however, are often scarcely validated and contain many outliers and data highly inconsistent with previous observations for particular locations. Some institutions who digitize these data, use software that automatically scans paper data, and converts it into numbers, a technology that still has limitations in terms of accuracy. Other institutions may collect data from sensors and data loggers, but these too contain erroneous data due to sporadic sensor malfunctions. Inconsistent data adversely affects statistical analyses performed with these datasets. Manually looking for these errors is not practical and thus the need for automation of data curation with the aid of computer programming. Using Microsoft Access and Visual Basic for Applications, a database application was developed capable of importing temperature, precipitation, evaporation and wind data from weather stations. Investigators can set validation parameters for a particular weather station. The software then uses these parameters to separate outliers from the rest of the data. Curated data sets can be exported to Microsoft Excel to facilitate statistical analyses. The application also provides a visualization tool which can create graphs comparing weather parameters between locations over time. The released version of the app includes data from 26 weather stations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Scientists using this tool will have greater confidence in the results of the analyses of weather station data sets. The easy-to-use export and visualization tools can help find trends with relative ease.