The free access repository for researchers, decision makers and the civil community, makes information available on the marine ecosystems and meteorology of the Magallanes Region. It will soon integrate other environmental data.
With the participation of the Governor of the Magallanes Region Jorge Flies, Punta Arenas celebrated the launch of the first oceanographic data platform called the Time Series of Environmental Data of the Magallanes and Antarctic Peninsula Region (STARM). The website was jointly developed by the Data Observatory (DO), the Center for Dynamic Research in High Latitude Marine Ecosystems (IDEAL) of the Austral University of Chile (UACh) and Amazon Web Services (AWS).
STARM is an unprecedented project that continuously collects physicochemical and biological information from the ocean surface between Punta Arenas and Puerto Williams. In addition, it includes data from oceanographic campaigns carried out in the Beagle Channel, weather stations and anchoring systems. This platform works as a repository with an easy and intuitive graphical interface that allows you to view and download the information. The platform will be updated regularly as new environmental data for the region is generated, which can be accessed through the page at www.starm.cl.
Ricardo Giesecke, academic at the Institute of Marine and Limnological Sciences (ICML) of the UACh and researcher at the IDEAL Center, assured that “although today it only has data from the IDEAL Center, the objective is to extend it to other institutions. STARM has information from weather stations installed in Punta Arenas and the Beagle Channel. It also has information on oceanographic cruises, continuous measurement anchorage systems, and surface measurements of environmental parameters of channels in the region. It is intended as a free access system, with reliable and interoperable data between various platforms in order to democratize information, promote regional scientific development, in addition to acting as an important tool for decision-making in our region.”
Likewise, Governor Flies highlighted “the effort that is being made in the scientific and technological field. The idea is that this data is available to the community, public authorities and the private world. This means that the information that the region is widely generating will be available in a repository and observatory.”
Rodrigo Roa, executive director (I) of the Data Observatory, added that “(this project) is the result of more than a year of joint work between researchers and developers. Thanks to this, today we are faced with a platform that allows us to unify and to concentrate the oceanographic and meteorological data of the Magallanes Region, until today, very difficult to monitor. The information is available to the entire community to do science and generate more knowledge, and the technology was worked on together with the AWS team, guaranteeing efficiency in the face of high demand. In the future we will be able to feed the platform with more georeferenced data such as fauna and flora. Today’s challenge is to use it and make it grow over time. These types of platforms are useful tools for those who make decisions aimed at studying and generating policies to mitigate the impact of climate change in the region.”
For his part, Álvaro Paredes, data scientist engineer of the STARM project in DO, explained that “this platform works without the need for an exclusive server, which allows simultaneous access from one to a million users, always maintaining the same quality of performance. In addition, it offers services in the cloud, so that users can upload more information from new sensors and make the data available in a common format and on a very friendly interactive map.”
José Garcés, ICML academic and IDEAL Center researcher, highlighted the scientific value of the platform and stated that “this version of STARM is more dynamic and with new quality standards. The platform is aimed at school audiences, university audiences, and the researchers themselves, and it is a way of democratizing access to information that will be very useful for the region. What is new is that the data is available in a single repository and allows a historical view of Magallanes.”