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Planetary Data Reader

Project description

The Planetary Data Reader (pdr)

This tool provides a single command---read(‘/path/to/file’)---for ingesting all common planetary data types. It is currently in development. Almost every kind of "primary observational data" product currently archived in the PDS (under PDS3 or PDS4) should be covered eventually. Currently-supported datasets are listed here.

If the software fails while attempting to read from datasets that we have listed as supported, please submit an issue with a link to the file and information about the error (if applicable). There might also be datasets that work but are not listed. We would like to hear about those too. If a dataset is not yet supported that you would like us to consider prioritizing, please fill out this request form.


If you use pdr in your work, please cite us using our Zenodo DOI: DOI


pdr is now on conda and pip. We recommend (and only officially support) installation into a conda environment. You can do this like so:

conda create --name pdrenv
conda activate pdrenv
conda install -c conda-forge pdr

The minimum supported version of Python is 3.9.

Using the conda install will install all dependencies in the environment.yml file (both required and optional) for pdr. If you'd prefer to forego the optional dependencies, please use minimal_environment.yml in your installation. This is not supported through a direct conda install as described above and will reqiore additional steps. Optional dependencies and the added functionality they support are listed below:

  • pvl: allows Data.load("LABEL", as_pvl=True), which will load PDS3 labels as pvl objects rather than plain text
  • astropy: adds support for FITS files
  • jupyter: allows usage of the Example Jupyter Notebook (and other jupyter notebooks you create)
  • pillow: adds support for TIFF files and browse image rendering
  • matplotlib: allows usage of save_sparklines, an experimental browse function


You can check out our example Notebook on Binder for a quick interactive demo of functionality: Binder

Additional information on usage including examples, output data types, notes and caveats, tests, etc. can now be accessed in our documentation on readthedocs at: Documentation Status

This work is supported by NASA grant No. 80NSSC21K0885.

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