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Overview of "Register and Connect Instrument" Use Case

Instrument is registered with metadata, gets an ID, and connects to ION

Tip: Key Points
UC Priority= 4 or 5: Critical, is in R2
Only boldface steps are required
<#> before a step —> lower priority
(optional) —> run-time option

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Refer to the Product Description and Product Description Release 2 pages for metadata definitions.

Actors Marine Asset Operator
References UC.R1.02 Hello Instrument
Sensor Interface Descriptor (SID)
Is Used By UC.R2.08 Manage Instrument Lifecycle
Is Extended By  
In Acceptance Scenarios AS.R2.02A Cruise Support, AS.R2.02C Instrument Life Cycle Support
Technical Notes This use case isolates a small number of steps from a larger use case (see UC.R2.08 Manage Instrument Lifecycle)
to emphasize the relationship of the registration and connection processes.
Lead Team SA
Primary Service Instrument Activation Services
Version 2.3
UC Priority 4
UC Status Mapped + Ready
UX Exposure MNC, SYS


This information summarizes the Use Case functionality.

An instrument is registered along with its descriptive metadata.
Later, the instrument is activated in the system, and is associated with the previously entered metadata.


  • By the time the instrument is connected to an Integrated Observatory system, a driver has been developed and deployed for the instrument class and model. (Instrument metadata is explicitly addressed in the use case.)
  • Any suitably privileged user may substitute for the Marine Asset Operator role.

Initial State

The Integrated Observatory knows nothing of this particular instrument; a Marine Asset Operator is ready to enter the instrument definition.

Scenario for "Register and Connect Instrument" Use Case

  1. Marine Asset Operator registers this instrument with the Integrated Observatory by filling out an appropriate web form, creating the instrument's system identity.
    1. Internally, Instrument is a resource, associated with an internal identity, and tracked in the instrument registry.
    2. The life cycle state of the instrument is associated with the unique resource identity (either in the instrument registry, or elsewhere).
    3. A detailed list of sensor metadata is required to characterize the instrument (may be entered automatically from XML that came with the instrument, came from a sensor/asset database, be built manually) before the instrument can be well used by the system.
    4. Some metadata, or even an initial preliminary registration, may be populated automatically from a database.
  2. Instrument is physically connected (interfaced) to the Integrated Observatory system, and is identified by the system.
    1. Note: The phrase 'identified by the system' does not mean 'identified by talking to the instrument'; instead it means an association is made in the Integrated Observatory software between the entity it is talking to, and the individual instrument instance. This association can be made by operator metadata entry, by automated linkage of information already in the Integrated Observatory, by recognition of the instrument (e.g., by its serial number) after communicating with it, or by obtaining metadata about the instrument by some protocol like a PUCK.
    2. Ideally this takes place for the first time as part of the Bench Testing process (and recurs in the ION System Test process); otherwise it occurs for the first time in the ION System Test process. It occurs again when the system is connected to the Integrated Observatory network from the deployed location.
    3. Ideally the instrument's ID and metadata are provided to the system automatically. That is, no manual steps are required to interface the instrument to the system, because the system can learn what it needs to know from the newly installed instrument. (This is not planned in R2, but is a future capability to be aware of.)
    4. For many marine platforms, the instrument is mounted on and interfaced to the platform, and the platform mediates or announces the connection to the Integrated Observatory. In the extreme version of this, where the instrument can not be commanded, the platform announces the connection long after the fact.
    5. The activities include authentication, authorization and qualification.
    6. Registered resource consumers shall be notified that an instrument has been connected according to pre-defined metadata criteria. For example, a science user may want to know of all instruments at a particular location.
  3. Instrument Agent initiates full communications with instrument.
    1. Characterize and update the status/state of health, resource life cycle state, location metadata, other metadata.
    2. The Instrument Agent is operating in a Capability Container that may or may not be collocated.
  4. If the communication irreparably fails at any point, the Instrument Agent will issue an event indicating the error has occurred.
    1. Anyone can subscribe to this kind of event, from a particular Instrument Agent or all Instrument Agents.
    2. The criticality of the event is determined by configuration of the event notification system.

Final State

The instrument is operating on the target Integrated Observatory system (but is not necessarily deployed yet on an OOI marine platform).


These comments provide additional context (usually quite technical) for editors of the use case.

While the target for the Integrated Observatory is to have real-time bidirectional communication with all instruments, and to be able to recognize the instruments via a PUCK-like protocol, the OOI approach to this goal will be incremental, and quite limited in deployments supported by Release 2.

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