Known Issues and Future Developments

This file is under construction. Last updated on October 21, 2008, 13:10 p.m. EDT


This is a production prototype. We are seeking user input and advice. As we continue to work with this application we will revise the content of this page. If you have suggestions or encounter problems, please use the comment form on the interface, or send email to

The Statistical Browser has been tested with Internet Explorer and Firefox. You may need to allow pop-ups for some of the data retrieval functions to work.

Known Issues

We know that there are some irregularities with the results in the Statistical Browser. We've listed the ones we know about. We are continuing to work on these issues. Updates will occur frequently.

  • Plots of ARM Surface Radiation Data for North Slope Alaska and Tropical Western Pacific sites have incorrect UTC labels where dual time scales are provided. Please disregard these. The "LST" (Local Standard Time) scale is correct.
  • Legends are needed for the box-and-whisker plots, and for the color bars for the contour plots. See "Additional User Notes" below.
  • Contour graphs with a local time of day range of 0 to 23 hours do not display data for the 24th hour.
  • For "Daily" plot types, please restrict the date range to no more than about a year before clicking "Get Plots". Reason: In some browser configurations, selecting the "Daily" plot type for the full default date range (e.g., with CMBE Cloud Fraction variables) can lock up or crash the browser.
  • Some empty plots can be found. We should later be able to eliminate empty plots at the beginning and end of the range of the data. We may add explanatory text to any empty statistical plots for interior dates.
  • Year ranges at the tops of some plots are for the full range of available files. Some measurements, however, are entirely missing for some years. We are considering adding logic to narrow the year-range to match the start and end of nonmissing values of each measurement.
  • Some "ARM Surface Radiation Data" plots lack y-axis labels. The graph header provides the units for these irradiances.
  • Units are not included in the files produced by clicking the "Get Statistics" or the "Get Data for the Selected Range" buttons.
  • Thumbnails and graphs are missing for the Tropical Western Pacific Darwin site for the Diurnal by month plot types.
  • For ARM Surface Radiation Data from Southern Great Plains E1 facility, the buttons to "Get Data for the Selected Range" and "Get ARM Data Files" may not work.
  • Some contour plots show streaking or interpotation artifacts, because these are being created with a contouring progam.
  • At least one monthly plot is based on very limited data because the instrument operated for only a few hours (local time) during the month (Cloud Fraction based on MPL, from Tropical Western Pacific's Manus Island for June 2007).
  • A few monthly plots for Shortwave Direct Normal Irradiance at Tropical Western Pacific's Nauru Island show strange patterns, in part because the display of negative values is suppressed. We plan to investigate these.
  • For CMBE "Daily" and "Monthly" plot types, data are not available to support the buttons to "Get Statistics" and "Get ARM Data Files." The button to "Get Data for the Selected Range" should work.
  • Data extraction for the Long-Term Continuous Forcing Data from Variational Analysis is not currently working.
  • An error advisory symbol (exclamation point in a small yellow triangle) may appear in the lower left corner of Internet Explorer after loading plots. This does not appear to cause problems. We will investigate this.
  • More material will be added here.

Future Developments

  • We plan to add products for showcase data from Climate Modeling Best Estimate (CMBE) for Tropical Western Pacific Nauru Island (C2) and Darwin, North Australia (C3).
  • We plan to add products for ARM Surface Radiation Data for the remaining facilities at Southern Great Plains.
  • We plan to enable ordering ARM data files, using the ARM Archive shopping cart.
  • We plan to link customized views of this Statistical Browser from related ARM pages, including instrument or VAP pages. For example, a customized view of the ARM Surface Radiation Data will be linked from the "QCRAD" VAP process page.
  • We may be able to force "nice numbers" for the Height values for the contour plots.
  • We plan to improve the sizes and fonts used for graph labels.
  • More material will be added here.

Additional User Notes

  • The box-and-whisker plots are explained as follows: The red dot is the mean. The inner horizontal blue line is the median. The top and bottom of the box are the 75th and 25th percentiles, respectively. The top and bottom capped whiskers are the maximum and minimum values of the quantity. The quantity is sometimes 15-minute means and sometimes 1-hour means.
  • The colors on the contour plots represent the cloud fraction, as a percentage. On contour plots with two rows of bar keys under the graph, the number to the right of each bar indicates the lower bound of the range of values represented by the bar's color.
  • More material will be added here.