Upcoming CWB Switch-Off is about keeping up with global best practice

Published: Thu Apr 5 2018 2:00 PM

We are constantly modernising our seismic data services here at GeoNet to keep up-to-date with international standards. GeoNet’s CWB is reaching its End-Of-Life and will be replaced with FDSN web services by 31 July.

What’s happening?

One of GeoNet’s key objectives is to provide robust, easy access to high quality data streams, which are in line with international standards. On 31 July 2018 our current data services, Continuous Waveform Buffer (CWB) and QuakeML service will be replaced by the more widely used FDSN web service.

Introducing FDSN

The International Federation of Digital Seismograph Networks (FDSN) is a global organisation with a far-reaching membership of groups responsible for installing and maintaining seismograph networks within their geographic borders and globally. The FDSN web service is now a community standard in the way seismological data is accessed and shared and is supported by most large seismological agencies.

You can see who the network members are here, all of who contribute seismological data streams to improve the global picture of seismic activity.

The feedback we have received from our end-user community and the growing international support and use of FDSN web services highlights strong demand for us to enhance and fully support our FDSN web services to access waveforms, earthquake catalogue and station information, and our users will benefit from standardising our data streams with this expanding international web-service.

The nuts and bolts of the changes underway

Over the past year, we have been working hard to strengthen our FDSN web services and expand it to include all three major services: event, station and dataselect. You can find out more about the FDSN services GeoNet provides here and here.

Unfortunately, we can’t deliver the FDSN service at a high level and keep maintaining all our other access mechanisms. This means that our services (including CWB and QuakeML) that essentially do the same thing as FDSN will be taken offline.

CWB and QuakeML are two services that will be turned off on 31st July 2018

For those of you who use GeoNet's data for your work, we know that the way you access the data is vital. Some of you still use CWB to do your work and a sudden switch-over to FDSN will impact how you are currently doing things. This why we are going to make this transition as smooth as possible.

Transition Plan:

To assist with the transition to FDSN, we have come up with a timeline that includes “brown-outs” (periods when the affected services will be unavailable) and a number of resources, these include:

  • Workshops at GNS Science to introduce you to FDSN-WS and help you adjust your scripts (if there is sufficient interest externally we will consider hosting elsewhere).

  • Contacts in GeoNet’s Data Management Team who have been through this transition already and can help you if you need it.

  • Online resources such as code examples on the GeoNet website and through github.

  • There is also a lot of support from the community online, such as through obspy and IRIS, and many people already use this in New Zealand and abroad.

Timeline of upcoming switch-over to FDSN webservices

Timeline of upcoming switch-over to FDSN webservices

If you have questions or would like assistance with switching from CWB and QuakeML to FDSN, please get contact our support team.