It is happening: after month and years of preparations the TROPOMI instrument not only is at the Centre Spatial de Liege (CSL) testing facility, but since a few days there is a continuous stream of measurement data coming in!

CSL is an active research centre in the fields of space instruments, space testing and technologies. CSL is highly known as a test centre but it as also important activities in space instrumentation and advanced technologies. For years, the CSL has been an “ESA-coordinated facility”. Today, the Testing Department operates five thermal-vacuum chambers with volumes ranging from 1 to 170 m³, two shakers (88 to 200 kN) and a number of specialized equipments all located in a 1,000-m² clean room area (ISO 5 to ISO 7).

So while there is still the need to continue working on the calibration algorithms, there of course is the more immediate need to respond to any problems encountered while the calibration measurements are running. Part of this support was the request arriving this afternoon for the creation of a small webpage to provide an overview of the available quicklook documents (basically a collection of diagnostics plots). Nothing big, just a simple webpage with a list of files (and a link for downloading them) – something like this:

Webpage screenshot

The pretty much straight-forward way to do this is (once more) coming up with a short shell script to locate the PDF files… and write out some HTML code. The latter is something I haven’t been doing in quite a while: what I have been doing instead was to run some simple markup text files through e.g. Doxygen or – as is the case for this website – use a static website generator to handle the task. So this time it is back to the basics.

    html_header ()
        echo "<html>"
        echo "  <head>"
        echo "    <meta name=\"author\" content=\"Lars Baehren\" />"
        echo "    <meta name=\"description\" content=\"TROPOMI SWIR quicklooks\" />"
        echo "    <meta name=\"keywords\" content=\"TROPOMI, SWIR, Quicklook, SRON\" />"
        echo "    <meta name=\"generator\" content=\"Lars Baehren\" />"
        echo "  <head>"
        echo "  <body>"
        echo ""
        echo "    <h1>TROPOMI SWIR quicklooks</h1>"
        echo ""
        echo "    <i>Page generated `date`</i>"
        echo ""

Luckily nothing fancy is required, so whipping a few lines of bash script to generate HTML output isn’t a big deal. Of course there always is the risk to start overdoing it once there first working version is out: there is always something to tweak and improve, be it making adjustments to the layout, add navigation links, etc. However for the time being nothing of the like is in the works, so all there is to it is to let “cron” run the script(s) and provide the people back at SRON or CSL (Luik, BE) with the input they need.