Standing Committee Meeting Report COCOM

January 2002

Report to ExCom

January 9, 2002, CoCom Meeting

IRIS DMC, Seattle WA

Attendees: Tim Ahern (IRIS), Rick Aster (NMT), Rhett Butler (IRIS), Goran Ekstrom (Harvard U), Jim Fowler (IRIS), Shane Ingate (IRIS), Roy Johnson (UA Tucson), Monica Kohler (UCLA), Gary Pavlis (Indiana U), Barbara Romanowicz (UC Berkeley), Candy Shin (IRIS), David Simpson (IRIS), John Taber (IRIS), Greg van der Vink (IRIS)

Apologies: Tom Owens (U Sth Carolina)

Carry-Over/Indirect Cost Recovery

CoCom noted that the NSF New Cooperative Agreement budget target in year 01-02 was $12.6M, and increases by $0.5M/year for each of the 5 years.  The target for year 02-03 is $13.1M. 

CoCom also reviewed the distribution of funds available as carry-over from the 2000-2001 budget year. After adjustments from committed but unexpended obligations, there was $127,265 in carry-over from year '00-'01.  By program, this carry-over consists of: $17.074K for Corp, $14.415K for PASSCAL, $70.226K for DMS and $25.550K for E&O.

It was explained to CoCom that ICR is a means by which NSF can determine the costs of running a large facility.  An overhead rate 25.69% has been calculated for ‘year 01-02.  This rate will be adjusted on an annual basis, and until costs stabilize, it will likely oscillate as a year of over-recovery will be followed by a year of under-recovery.  The SCs are advised that for their budget planning, they should continue to work with direct costs, as in the past. Expenses for corporate office and consortium activities will be tracked by CoCom in the same manner as the other programs. The income from overhead, and its variations from year to year, will also be tracked by CoCom.

COCOM felt that since program carryover was relatively small, the carryover funds will remain in the program.

Subaward Procedures

CoCom adopted a proposal identifying sub-awards as either “Core Facility”, “Cooperating Facility”, or “Flexible Awards”.  Furthermore, the sub-awards would be subject to one of three levels and frequency of review.  This review process is a means to standardize sub-award review and provide a mechanism to identify sub-awards that may require a change in review status.

Instrument Committee

Action: ExCom is requested to approve nominations as core members of the Instrumentation Committee. Program Managers and the Director of Operations will be members of the Committee. The President will designate an IRIS staff member to serve as contact person for the committee.  Specialists will be brought in on an as-needed basis. The Instrument Committee is encouraged to develop a list-server and website to keep interested parties informed of its activities.

Initial tasks for the IC include: PASSCAL to task the IC with reviewing prototype instrument testing requirements and results.  GSN to task the IC with defining technical specifications for the GSN based upon its soon-to-be-released review of GSN science goals.  The IC is requested to identify key issues, and develop a meeting schedule

EarthScope activities

Action: CoCom directed IRIS to update the EarthScope/USArray plan in the form of a draft proposal to be ready for the Spring 2002 CoCom .

USGS Interactions

Action: The President will draft a letter to H. Zimmerman (NSF) requesting help to expedite the MOU with USGS.

ASL Vault

CoCom discussed the loss of the ANMO vault at the ASL, and the USGS proposal to build a new vault on Kirkland AFB. 

Action:  CoCom requests that the GSN and PASSCAL SCs consider the loss of the ASL facility, and the advantages of a new facility.  CoCom tasks the IC with defining the usefulness of a new facility.  CoCom recommends that IRIS indicate to USGS an interest in the development of a new facility and a desire to work to develop a coordinated plan.


Action:  CoCom requests the PASSCAL SC to review and document past RAMP deployments and make recommendations for improvement.


IRIS and USGS interact on a number of activities related to ANSS (eg. backbone NSN stations, data management, RAMP).  CoCom notes that it would be useful to raise the level of discussion with USGS to a higher level and develop specific plans and agreements for current and future activities.

Action:  CoCom requests that the GSN SC review the status of NSN/ANSS coordination with USArray. and the DMS SC review data management and archiving activities related to NSN and regional networks.

Data Quality Control Procedures

CoCom approves a process for the DMS to issue an RFPs for several small proposals that will develop quality-control software that can be used within the DMS and elsewhere.

SC Minutes & Action Items

CoCom discussed the suggestion that action items from each of the Standing, Planning and Coordinating committees be published on the web within four weeks of the meeting.  CoCom also suggests that full minutes of these meetings be made available to the following ExCom.  It is suggested that in order to meet these time constraints, preliminary approval of SC minutes should be performed electronically.

Programmatic Issues

CoCom discussed programmatic plans for year 02-03, and recommends these goals either for ExCom approval or for further discussion by the respective SC.


The Program Plan will be unveiled at SSA.

The E&O Committee is encouraged to further develop the mode of interaction between IRIS and USESN.  As a long-term plan, IRIS could serve as an umbrella for coordination of USESN activities with specific tasks funded and coordinated through IRIS E&O. Additional money should be secured from NSF through an IRIS proposal.  An important aspect of coordination will be to arrange for USESN data to be available through the DMC.  A USESN workshop will be organized in 2002.

An RFP has been issued and E&O will be awarding several flexible proposals for seed funding.

The first responsibility of the joint DMS/E&O programmer is developing the next-generation Seismic Monitor

Bulk email will be sent out to solicit suggestions for IRIS/SSA Distinguished Lecturers. .  The two lecturers will be selected by the search committee by the end of February.  The search subcommittee will pass to ExCom and SSA names for approval prior to the SSA meeting April 17-19, 2002.  Lectures will be given during the 02-03 academic year

Affiliates Program.  The intention is to develop a flyer and have new affiliates by the Workshop.

Internship; up to 8 interns will be supported.  The brochure has been published.

The next E&O SC meeting will be at U S Carolina 4-5 March.


The PASSCAL SC will charge the IC with reviewing the test plan of the new DAS. Depending upon the results of the testing, the SC may ask the IC to review the results.

IRIS expects an additional $2.5M from DOE.  The PASSCAL SC will develop a plan to ensure that orders for instruments can be fulfilled, and that the PIC has the staff to mobilize the completed systems.

The next PASSCAL SC meeting will be at UC San Diego, 11-12 March.


The GSN SC is revising the GSN science goals, which were initially defined in 1984.  The revised goals will be submitted to the IC who will then define a corresponding set of technical requirements.

The next GSN SC will be in Salt Lake City, UT 21-22 March.


The DMS SC will coordinate with partner data centers to enhance NetDC, considering among other topics, network-source attribution and increasing visibility of the package.

The DMS is finishing its self-study, and will embark on a strategic long-term plan. The next step will be to develop a focussed vision of the DMS 10 years from now.

DMS SC recommends that a PASSCAL Instrument Center staff member attend the DMS SC in order to facilitate DMS-PASSCAL data-flow co-operation.

The DMS will issue an RFP for data-quality control

The DMC now heavily dependent on Oracle, which resides on a single server.  There is a pressing need for server-redundancy, as well as hardening the real-time system.

The next DMS SC will be at the DMC, 14-15 March.

IT Issues

CoCom noted that a key issue for IRIS to consider is how to develop new IT functionality?  An early opportunity for discussion will be the EarthScope IT Workshop 25-26 March in Snowbird.  This could be followed by a focussed workshop co-organized by IRIS and SCEC.

Next Meetings

CoCom will meet at IRIS HQ, 11-12 April.  ExCom will meet at UC, Berkeley 22-23 April.