The following is a set of frequently asked questions (FAQ) sent into BODC. For further enquiries please contact the BODC Enquiries Officer.

1. What data sets do you hold?

Try where to find data for information on our data holdings and links to catalogues and inventories of data sets.

Try products for information on our marine data products and collaborative data products.

If you still can't find what you want, or are not really sure what it is you need, please contact the BODC Enquiries Officer.

2. I want to use some data for commercial purposes. What are the restrictions on use and will there be a charge?

Details of restrictions on use (given in the commercial data licence agreement) and charges can be obtained from the BODC Enquiries Officer. Currently charges only apply for commercial use of wave and current meter data, for tide gauge data less than three months old and for some CDROM products.

3. I want a job. Who do I send my CV to?

Information on current vacancies can be found here.

4. How good are these data I have just received from BODC?

It very much depends on what they are and when and how they were collected. Detailed information on data quality is given in quality control flags and supporting documentation. Find out about the data processing work carried out at BODC.

5. I know what types of data I want but they don't seem to be there for the location and/or time I want. What do I do?

Most of our data comes from specific research projects that run for a limited time. You may need to consider using modelled or remotely sensed data. For more information contact the BODC Enquiries Officer.

6. Where do the data come from?

The data we hold come from a variety of sources

  • scientific research and monitoring by academic and commercial bodies
  • long and short-term monitoring stations
  • coastal, shelf-sea and deep-sea measurements
  • surface sampling, water column and sea-floor measurements
  • multidisciplinary research projects collecting a variety of data types such as biological, chemical, physical and geophysical data.

7. How are the data distributed?

We strive to make our data holdings accessible via our web site. We are currently enhancing our web-based data and metadata delivery capability. However not all of our holdings are accessible at present. We currently have a number of data delivery mechanisms.

  • Online delivery — access to some data sets via the web
  • Information and inventories search various inventories, directories or catalogues to find information describing data sets either held by BODC or known to us
  • Data products — distribution of data (usually project data sets) on CDROM

8. What do you do with the data?

We are the designated marine data centre for the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). Our approach to marine data management involves the careful storage, quality control and archiving of data so they are unaffected by changes in technology and will be available into the future. We distribute the data to scientists, educational establishments, industry and the public.

Our tasks include

  • collecting data sets from different sources
  • archiving the original data files
  • processing data into a standard format
  • quality controlling data
  • calibrating data where appropriate
  • integrating the data into relational databases
  • for future use, documenting each data set to provide crucial information about
    • data collection and analysis
    • the context of the data set
    • the data originator
    • BODC processing and quality control
  • redistributing the data