From Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)

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Data System Name: GIOVANNI
Data System URL:
Contact Person: Gregory Leptoukh
Contact e-mail:


About the Data System (Purposes, Audience)

The Goddard Online Interactive Visualization ANd aNalysis Infrastructure or "Giovanni" is an online tool allowing researchers, students, and application users to easily explore, inter-compare, and analyze remote sensing data using only a Web browser.


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The Goddard Earth Science Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) developed Giovanni to easily explore, inter-compare, and analyze data using only a Web browser. Giovanni employs scientifically valid algorithms and a rich schema for describing data parameters, a combination that provides users with scientifically meaningful results. This, sometimes subtle, distinction is often overlooked in other online data visualization and analysis tools. The current version of Giovanni, version 3, evolved from the successes of previous versions that emphasized a simple interface, rapid image rendering, and scientifically valid processing that correctly accounted for the algorithms employed (including underlying assumptions). Based on Common Gateway Interface (CGI) Perl scripts, HyperText Markup Language (HTML) templates, and GrADS (Grid Analysis and Display System) scripts, the early versions of Giovanni were enormously successful and deployments at the GES DISC quickly proliferated. Although successful, the architecture was based on old technology. The costs to maintain and extend Giovanni for new science driven requirements and for supporting standard interfaces and protocols became too great. As a result, a radical departure for a new Giovanni architecture was undertaken. The result was Giovanni, version 3. Giovanni is based on a services oriented architecture (SOA) supported by a workflow management system. It is designed to be extensible with respect to new science requirements and interoperable with standard protocols and data formats.



List of Publications, Papers, Presentations

Berrick, S., Leptoukh, G., Farley, J., & Rui, H. (2009). Giovanni: A Web services workflow-based data visualization and analysis system. IEEE Trans. Geosci. Remote Sens., 47(1), 106-113

Acker, J. and G. Leptoukh, 2007. Online Analysis Enhances Use of NASA Earth Science Data, EOS, Transactions of American Geophysical Union, 88, 14

Chen, A., Leptoukh, G., Kempler, S., Nadeau, D. and Zhang, X. 2008. Augmenting the Research Value of Geospatial Data using Google Earth. Journal of the Virtual Explorer, Electronic Edition, 29, paper 100.

Savtchenko, A., Kummerer, R., Smith, P., Gopalan, A., Kempler, S., and Leptoukh, G., 2008. A-Train Data Depot - Bringing Atmospheric Measurements Together, IEEE Trans. on Geoscience and Remote Sensing,46, 2788-2795

Ahmad, S., G. Leptoukh, J. Johnson, J. Farley, S. Kempler, Global Monitoring of Atmospheric Pollutants from the Aura Satellite, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA.

Berrick, S., G. Leptoukh, C. Lynnes, GES DISC Interoperable Services for Atmospheric Data The 2007 Summer Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) Conference, Madison, Wisconsin, July 17-20, 2007.

Aijun Chen, Gregory Leptoukh, Liping Di, Christopher Lynnes, Steven Kempler and Denis Nadeau, NASA A-Train Vertical Data (.Curtains.) in Google Earth, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA.

Johnson, J., Ahmad, S., Leptoukh, G., Gerasimov, I., Farley, J., Zhu, T., Enhanced Capabilities for Aura MLS, OMI and HIRDLS Data Within Giovanni, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA. View Poster

Steve Kempler, Cloudsat, CALIOP, MODIS, AIRS, OMI, and POLDER Data Search and Visualization Available to Facilitate Multi Instrument Cloud Studies Along the A-Train Path, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA.

Leptoukh, G., Zubko, V., Gopalan, A., Remer, L., Intercomparison of Atmospheric Aerosol Climatologies Obtained From Passive Satellite Instruments, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA

Ana Prados, Gregory Leptoukh, Erica J. Alston, and Irina N. Sokolik, Assessing U.S Air Quality Using CALIPSO and MODIS Data via Giovanni, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA.

Hualan Rui, John Farley, Gregory Leptoukh, Stephen Berrick, New Data and Capabilities in the NASA Goddard Giovanni System, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA.

Savtchenko, A. R. Kummerer, P. Smith, S. Kempler, G. Leptoukh, A-Train Data Depot Bringing Atmospheric Measurements Together International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS), Barcelona, Spain, July 23-27, 2007.

Peter Smith, Steve Kempler, Greg Leptoukh, Andrey Savtchenko, Graeme Stephens, Dave Winker, Multi-Sensor Data From A-Train Instruments Brought Together for Atmospheric Research, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA

Viktor Zubko, Gregory Leptoukh, Arun Gopalan, Merging MODIS Terra and Aqua Level 3 Aerosol Optical Thickness for Giovanni Online Data Analysis and Visualization, 2007 AGU Fall Meeting, December 10-14, San Francisco, CA.

Data System Scope

Data Content

Datasets Served

OMI-Aura, MLS-Aura, HIRDLS-Aura, AIRS-Aqua, MODIS-Terra, MODIS-Aqua, TRMM, MISR, SeaWiFS, TOMS, CALIPSO, CloudSat, Polder, MERIS


More 1200 geophysical parameters measured by sensors onboard satellites and from models.

Spatial - Temporal Coverage




Indirect - air pollution, humidity, temperature, etc.

Forecasting and Reanalysis

MERRA: MODERN ERA RETROSPECTIVE-ANALYSIS FOR RESEARCH AND APPLICATIONS (1979 – 2008) NASA reanalysis of atmospheric observations from using GEOS-5, focusing on hydrological cycle, resolution 1/2x2/3x72

Model/Emissions Evaluation


Characterization, Trends, Accountability

Not Given


Not Given

Data System IT

Primary/Official Store for Some data


Data Consolidation/integration


Providing Data Access to users/externals

Giovanni provides access to the original and their subsets in various formats: HDF, netCDF, ASCII, kml/kmz (for Google Earth)

Data Processing

S4PM, Giovanni workflow


Plot Types for Single Parameters:

  • Area plots of time-averaged parameters
  • Time series plots of area-averaged parameters
  • Meridional averages
  • Zonal averages
  • Vertical profiles
  • Longitude-latitude-pressure-time cross sections

Plot Types for Multi-Parameter Intercomparisons:

  • Area plots of overlain time-averaged parameters
  • Time series plots of area-averaged parameters
  • Difference plots
  • Scatter plots with regression
  • Temporal correlation maps

Animations Climatology and anomalies ASCII output for maps and plots Web services for downloading subsetted data

Decision Support (e.g. some integration into user business process)

Not Given

End-to-End Integration

Complete end-to-end chains starting from the original data source via various protocols are integrated together into Giovanni instances

Other DS Values

Not Given

Data Access and/or Output Interoperability

SOA, WMS, WCS, OPeNDAP, custom arrangements

Reusable Tools and Methods

GrADS, IDL, Python, Perl Aggregation, statistics

Security Barriers and Solutions

Not Given

User Feedback Approach

Msgs to giovanni listserv

Other Architecture

Not Given

User Provided Content