Accessing JWST Science Data After the End of Commissioning
The first JWST science data will be released to users at the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST) in stages over two days starting on July 13, 2022 at 11 a.m. EDT. Data exploration and downloads will be available through the MAST portal and the associated programmatic interface (API). In many cases, MAST will also provide bulk download scripts which pull the data from the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud. These scripts provide free downloads of the data and do not require an AWS account to use. Users wanting to download more than a handful of observations are especially encouraged to use the AWS bulk download scripts in order to reduce the amount of traffic that goes through MAST in the first few weeks.
The first available science data will be those associated with the "Webb First Images" released on July 12th. The process to release these data will begin around 11 a.m. EDT on July 13, 2022. A web page will be provided on the day with a list of the program IDs associated with those Webb First Images as well as links to download the pipeline processed data. The MAST archive expects to have products associated with all three levels of the standard JWST pipeline processing for these programs.
Data from executed Cycle 1 science programs will become available on July 14, 2022 shortly after 9 a.m. EDT. Those data will not have bulk download scripts and will only be available through the MAST portal and API. Some of these data have exclusive access periods and will only be available to authorized investigators.
The process of releasing the JWST commissioning data in the MAST portal will begin around 11 a.m. EDT on July 14, 2022. The six months of commissioning data is sizeable, with over 40 TB of data products becoming publicly available. It will take a few hours to set the permissions for the data to public in the MAST portal. At the start of this release, an announcement will be sent out along with links to web pages that will highlight scientifically interesting commissioning observations and AWS bulk download scripts.
Users who want to download JWST data from the MAST portal next week, regardless of whether those data have an exclusive access period, will need to log in using their MyST account. If you do not have a MyST account, register for one today.