Day 4

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Paper title VirES & VRE for (not only) Swarm
  1. Martin Pačes EOX IT Services GmbH Speaker
  2. Ashley Smith University of Edinburgh
Form of presentation Poster
  • B2. Earth Explorer missions
    • B2.05 Swarm - ESA's Extremely Versatile Magnetic Field and Geospace Explorer
Abstract text VirES for Swarm ( started as an interactive data visualization and retrieval interface for the ESA Swarm mission data products. It includes tools for studying various geomagnetic models by comparing them to the Swarm satellite measurements at given space weather and ionospheric conditions. It also allows location of conjunctions of the Swarm spacecrafts.

The list of the provided Swarm products has been growing over the time and it currently includes MAG (both, LR and HR), EFI, IBI, TEC, FAC, EEF, IPD, AEJ, AOB, MIT, IPP and VOB products as well as the collection of L2 SHA Swarm magnetic models, all synchronized to their latest available versions. Recently, the list of products has been extended also by calibrated magnetic field measurements from the CryoSat-2, GRACE and GRACE-FO missions, and 1s, 1min, and 1h measurements from the INTERMAGNET ground observatories. The VirES service no longer exclusively serves only Swarm products.

VirES provides access to the Swarm measurements and models either through an interactive visual web user interface or through a Python-based API (machine-to-machine interface). The latter allows integration of the users' custom processing and visualization.

The API allows easy extraction of data subsets of various Swarm products (temporal, spatial or filtered by ranges of other data parameters, such as, e.g., space weather conditions) without needing to handle the original product files. This includes evaluation of composed magnetic models (MCO, MLI, MMA, and MIO) and calculation of residuals along the satellite orbit.

The Python API can be exploited in the recently opened Virtual Research Environment (VRE), a JupyterLab based web interface allowing writing of processing and visualization scripts without need for software installation. The VRE comes also with pre-installed third party software libraries (processors and models) as well as the generic Python data handling and visualization tools. A rich library of tutorial notebooks has been prepared to ease the first steps and make it a convenient tool for a broad audience ranging from students and enthusiasts to advanced scientists.

To make the Swarm products accessible by a larger scientific community, VirES also serves data via the Heliophysic API (, a community specification defining a unified interface for retrieval of the time-series data.

Our presentation focuses on the evolution of the VirES & VRE services and presentation of the most recent enhancements.