The National Space Science Data Center (NSSDC) provides network-based and offline access to a wide variety of astrophysics, space plasma, solar physics, lunar and planetary data from NASA space flight missions, in addition to selected other data and some models and software. NSSDC provides access to online information bases about NASA and non-NASA data at the NSSDC and elsewhere and about the spacecraft and experiments that generate NASA space science data. NSSDC also provides information and support relative to data management standards and technologies.
NSSDC is part of the Space Science Data Operations Office (SSDOO) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD. The Astrophysics Data Facility (ADF) and the Space Physics Data Facility (SPDF) elements of SSDOO are partners with NSSDC in making certain astrophysics and space/solar physics data and other services available to the NSSDC user community. NSSDC is sponsored by NASA's Office of Space Sciences. NSSDC acts in concert with various NASA Discipline Data Systems in providing certain data and services. NSSDC currently provides its online data and services free of charge. For offline support (e.g., replication and mailing of magnetic tapes), NSSDC charges the incremental cost of fulfilling requests, although small charges may be waived for the NASA research community. (See website for further information.)
NSSDC was first established at Goddard Space Flight Center in 1966. Early in its life, NSSDC accumulated data primarily on 7-track and 9-track tape and on various photoproducts, and all data dissemination was via media replication and mailing. Starting in the mid-1980's NSSDC received and disseminated increasing data volumes via electronic networks. Most network dissemination today is via WWW and FTP, and most offline data dissemination is via CD-ROM.