Water and sediment samples (also called specimens) are key observational units in environmental sciences, particularly in marine ecology and geosciences, hydrobiology and limnology. Such samples must be maintained in the medium/long term and require to be easily discoverable through unique identification standards and metadata catalogues which are, at the moment, lacking. We present here both best practices and technological solutions for representing and sharing sample descriptions, using as an example water and sediment samples from a number of marine and freshwater sites belonging to the Italian Long-Term Ecological Research network (LTER-Italy). In LTER-Italy, observations are stored and shared following ISO 19156:2011 (O&M). We propose to enhance this practice by introducing the use of the physical samples metadata model identifying with International Geo Sample Number (IGSN) proposed by CSIRO. Information available for each physical sample includes, among the others, the sample name, type, the sampling location and method, and the indication of the sub-samples collected, with the relative sampling methodologies. Moreover, when the samples are analysed, for each of them a list of other information becomes available together with environmental variables data, including measures obtained directly in the field. We present here a proposal that provides a way for describing, archiving, visualising and sharing samples and allows connecting the different related entities, such as sampling methods, persons, instruments, and observations representations. A hyperlinking approach is tested as a valuable solution to manage all the information, giving the possibility to move among them, learning more about the data life cycle. Applying this approach makes it possible to refer each entity to the other, describing not only the relationships between them but also those among the different sub-entities generated from the same samples (e.g. from the sediment core to the slide with recognized foraminifera or from the water sample to the phytoplankton sample).
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|Titolo:||Sharing water and sediment samples metadata: an example from the LTER-Italy marine and freshwater sites|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||4.2 Abstract in Atti di convegno|