Skip to main content

FAIR dissemination of laboratory data in the solid Earth sciences: an EPOS community portal for cross-disciplinary metadata

The Thematic Core Service Multi-scale Laboratories (TCS MSL) is a community within the European Plate Observing System (EPOS) that includes a wide range of world-class laboratory infrastructures and that provides a cross-disciplinary platform for virtual access to data and physical access to solid Earth science labs.

Data coming from the MSL laboratories provide the backbone for scientific publications, but they are often available only as supplementary information to research articles. Moreover, the vast majority of the collected data remain unpublished, inaccessible, and often not sustainably preserved for the long term. To allow reuse of these valuable but often neglected data, the TCS MSL developed a full chain to support solid Earth science researchers from the long tail in the FAIR dissemination of their collected data.

This chain builds upon a community-driven metadata standard that allows for multiple discipline-specific detailed descriptions, a publication tool (metadata editor), and a community portal that gives access to DOI-referenced data publications at multiple research data repositories related to the TCS MSL context ( The portal is built on the CKAN repository toolkit and is driven by the richness of the TCS MSL metadata standard. Besides its importance for the TCS MSL community, it also provides a showcase of how to set up a CKAN-based environment as a cross-disciplinary catalogue for FAIR metadata exchange in a highly heterogeneous setting.


Otto A. Lange1, Laurens Samshuijzen1
1Utrecht University, The Netherlands
GeoMinKöln 2022