Data formats


The NODC "WODselect csv format", accepted at NOAA, with a comma used as a separator, is used for the presentation of primary data in the electronic version. The reading of data in this format does not require any specialized software. Data are presented in this format on the DVD in folder DATABASE and this site in the relevant sections.


The format is composed of fields (sections) entitled the GENERAL FIELDS, presented in Table 1. Every station starts with the key word CAST in the first column and its description is divided into several fields (sections). Below the description of the main fields (sections) such as CAST, METADATA, BIOLOGY METADATA, VARIABLES, BIOLOGY.

Table 1 - Main sections of the format"WODselect csv"
Starting Indicator Ending Indicator Content
CAST next section start Station position, date, and cruise identification
METADATA next section start Country, NODC accession#, ship/platform, project, institution, meteorology, and other measurement related information
VARIABLES END OF VARIABLES SECTION profile measurements (if present)
BIOLOGY METADATA BIOLOGY plankton sampling information (if present)
BIOLOGY END OF BIOLOGY SECTION plankton measurements (if present)

Table 2 - Format of sections CAST / METADATA / BIOLOGY METADATA
KEY WORD Specific measured variable
(empty if general metadata)
Value Units or code type Text description
Example: "CAST" section
CAST   7550947 WOD Unique Station WOD code
NODC Cruise ID   GE_9629   NODC code
Example: "METADATA" section
Country   GE ISO code GERMANY
Ship/platform   7977 WOD code METEOR
Dataset Temperature 4 WOD code CTD: TYPE UNKNOWN
Example: "BIOLOGY METADATA" section
Water_volume   23.4 m³(cubic meters)  
Mesh_size   54 um (micrometers)  
Gear_code   101 WOD code  

Table 3 - Section Format VARIABLES
VARIABLE Depth F O Variable 1 F O ... Variable 1 F O
UNITS m     variable 1 units     ... variable nz units    
Prof-Flag (entire profile)   (WOD code)     (WOD code)   ...   (WOD code)  
depth level 1 orig. depth value at level 1 depth WOD flag at level 1 depth origs. flag at level 1 variable 1 value at level 1 variable 1 WOD flag at level 1 variable 1 origs. flag at level 1 ... variable ny value at level 1 variable ny WOD flag at level 1 variable ny origs. flag at level 1
... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
depth level nz orig. depth value at level nz depth WOD flag at level nz depth origs. flag at level nz variable 1 value at level nz variable 1 WOD flag at level nz variable 1 origs. flag at level nz ... variable ny value at level nz variable ny WOD flag at level nz variable ny origs. flag at level nz
Example: "VARIABLES" section
VARIABLES Depth F O Temperature F O ... Oxygen F O
UNITS m     degrees C     ... ml/l    
Prof-Flag   0     0   ...   0 2
1 12.23 0 2 25.44670 2 ... 4.575 0 2
2 30.72 0 2 25.44050 2 ... 4.584 0 2
3 50.80 0 2 19.94030 2 ... 4.584 0 2
... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ...
15 993.99 0 2 4.14160 2 ... ---.--- 0 2

Note: F - individual level WOD flag, O - individual level originator's flag


Table 4 - Section Format BIOLOGY
Column # Column name Column description Example
1 BIOLOGY count of biology information set 1
2 Upper Z upper range of sampling depths (in meters) 0
3 Lower Z lower range of sampling depths (in meters) 200
4 Value Type type of value present in column 5 Taxon count, Wet Mass, etc.
5 ORIGINAL VALUE value of original measurement (value)
6 F originator's flag (if provided) WOD code
7 Orig Unit units of original measurement #/m2, mg/haul
8 WOD CBV value value after calculation to standard units of "#/m³", "mg/m³" or "ml/m³" (value)
9 F World Ocean Database CBV flag WOD code
10 _unit CBV standard units #/m³, mg/m³, or ml/m³
11 _meth calculation method WOD code
12 WOD PGC World Ocean Database Plankton Grouping Code 4212000 ( = zooplankton, crustacean, copepod)
13 ITIS TSN/Name ITIS Taxonomic Serial Number/Name 85272 ( = Calanus finmarchicus )
14 mod any taxonomic modifier WOD code ( sp., spp., ...)
15 sex any sex indicators WOD code ( male, female )
16 lif any life stage indicators WOD code (egg, larva, copepodite, ... )
17 trp any trophic indicators WOD code (parasitic, autotrophic, ...)
18 rlm any realm indicators WOD code (benthic, pelagic, endobiotic, ...)
19 ftr taxon shape WOD code
20 spm count method WOD code (special dyes or lighting)
21 min size minimum size WOD code or mm
22 max size maximum size WOD code or mm
23 ind length taxon length microns
24 ind width taxon width microns
25 ind rad taxon radius microns
26 tsv observation-specific sampled volume used for multi-net samplers

Note: Fixed position, blank field if value not present 


A more detailed description is provided at the NODC website
http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/SELECT/dbsearch/csv_info.html.
Special codes are used in the tables, which are also presented at the website
http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/WOD09/wod_codes.html. These are also provided on the DVD in the folder DATABASE/WODCODES in two formats: *.pdf and *.txt.