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Ecosystems Research

Data for Environmental Modeling (D4EM)

Issue
A challenge to environmental modeling is the collection, processing and organization of the data necessary to run the models. In addition to the sheer volume of data, it is also necessary to ensure that the data required by multiple models is geological information systems (GIS) data that is prepared properly, and whose relationships span multiple models (e.g., connectivity between watershed catchments and stream segments into which run-off flows). New projects often suffer due to the amount of time and effort spent re-inventing basic data management. Data for Environmental Modeling, or D4EM, however, re-uses programming from one project to another. D4EM strives to fully automate the access, retrieval and processing of data required for input to integrated modeling systems. It includes a data management functionality that is grouped into a series of libraries, each of which provides related data processing functions.

Action
EPA scientists have developed D4EM, a comprehensive set of tools that obtains and processes data to be used in mathematical environmental models. The software enables one to download data from various websites, and then processes the data to create model inputs. In contrast to other modeling systems, D4EM is a programming library using a component-based architecture that allows it to be integrated with other modeling applications. Any programmer can use D4EM to perform data management and processing tasks.

Results/Impact
D4EM automates and reduces the time and effort necessary to access, retrieve and process tremendous amounts of environmental data used in environmental models. Further, re-using D4EM from project to project supports high quality, reproducible modeling results used for regulatory applications.

Technical Team: Kurt Wolfe (contact) and Rajbir Parmar

Collaborations

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