A free to use FAIR Datastation is available at or setup your own.

At the the Metadata Configurator section you can start to select metadata fields and sheets that are of relevance for your research study. The information can be ultimately transformed into a Linked Data file with the validation module which can be used for automatic processing of data sets, publishing and exploratory queries over a multitude of studies.

This will give an interface that looks like this:

Web Interface

The Metadata Configuration Web Form is divided in to different segments; Project, Investigation,Study, etc.. You can see the relations between these segments in Figure below.

An explanation of each segment can be found on this page. And also what we expect it to contain.

After the creation of the template you can click on the GENERATE EXCEL button to create your project metadata file.

THE FAIRDS Metadata Structure


A Project are the overarching research programmes with defined aims. For example it could encompass a grant-funded programme of work. All data and metadata belongs to a Project.

Required fields

Project Identifier: At least 5 characters max 25 characters. Project Title: At least 10 characters. Project Description: At least 50 characters.

Users specific fields can be added using the Excel sheet.

Example of the Project section

Web Interface


Investigations are defined here as research questions within the the specified project. The Web form is designed to enter a single investigation.

Investigations belong to a Project.

Example of the Investigation section

Web Interface


A study comprises a series of observation units (see below) and assays or measurements of one or more types, undertaken to answer a particular biological question within it’s investigation.

Every Study has an associated Investigation

Example of the Study section

Web Interface

Observation Unit#

Observation units are objects that are subject to instances of observation and measurement.

Every Observation Unit is associated with a Study

For example in a study each entity patient, plant, animal, bioreactor or area studied is one observation unit. When studying 50 different animals, each animal should become one observation unit. Additional packages will be released that support different observation unit types such as bioreactors, patients, animals, fields or oceans.

Example of the Observation Unit section

Web Interface


A Sample is taken from an Observation Unit that can potentially be processed further to acquire data from. A multitude of samples can be taken from one or more observation units when for example performing time-scale experiments or sampling from different regions of the observation unit.

A varity of sample packages are available and are based on the MIxS standard ( Each package has its own obligatory fields and varying additional fields depending on the sample type.

It also possible to have different sample types belonging to the same Observation Unit. You can add multiple sample types by clicking on the Add template button.

Example of the Sample section

Web Interface


An Assay corresponds to the data (for example a sequencing run) that was performed on a sample obtained from its observation unit.

When you have multiple types of assays, for example DNA and RNA, you can enable both sheets and appropriate rows. In addition, columns can be adding using this form when such information is available.

Example of the DNA assay section:

Web Interface