Infrared Science Archive


IRSA Data Archive Operational


The NASA/IPAC Infrared Science Archive (IRSA) is the infrared component of the NASA archive centers. Specifically, IRSA’s charter states that it will (1) curate and serve scientific data products  from NASA’s  infrared  and sub-millimeter projects and missions, (2) enable optimal scientific exploration of these data sets by astronomers, and (3) support planning for, operation of, and data set generation from NASA missions.

IRSA is currently undergoing a major expansion -- the largest in its history -- from holdings dominated by IRAS and 2MASS to a much broader portfolio. IRSA is now the permanent home of the Spitzer Heritage Archive, the WISE Archive, and the NASA Planck Archive. IRSA will provide seamless access to Herschel data, and long-term access to public data products from SOFIA.

Major new IRSA holdings include:

  • Spitzer:  IRSA hosts the Spitzer Heritage Archive (SHA), and as of November 2010 it is the sole public Spitzer archive, holding all of the cryo data and continuously   augmented with warm mission data.
  • WISE:  The Preliminary WISE data release will occur in April 2011 through IRSA, providing image data and catalogs for 55% of the sky.
  • Planck:  In January 2011, ESA, NASA, the Planck Collaboration, and IRSA announced the first Planck data release: the Planck Early Release Compact Source Catalog (ERCSC). The ERCSC can be accessed through both the NASA Planck Archive and IRSA's Catalog Search service. In addition, the ERCSC is available for download along with the Explanatory Supplement.

In addition to these important NASA mission related data holdings, IRSA also provides the following data, services and tools:

  • CONTRIBUTED DATASETS:  IRSA holdings include third-party data sets contributed by astronomers wishing to share their data. The largest of these is COSMOS. Smaller datasets include non-Legacy Spitzer programs, enhanced data products from the ISO mission, and large surveys observed with the BOLOCAM instrument on the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory.
  • VALUE ADDED DATASETS:  IRSA offers value-added data sets, for which we are not the primary curator, but for which there is an additional value (e.g. simultaneous access with other IRSA data, and having it in the same, standard format). These data sets include the USNO-B, DENIS, and UCAC3 catalogs.
  • DATA ANALYSIS TOOLS:  IRSA offers multiple such services, some mission-specific (especially for IRAS and Spitzer) and some of general interest, including tools to generate Finder Charts and estimate Galactic dust extinction for any point on the sky.

IPAC's role:

IRSA is part of the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)


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