Building a unified and well-conceived database of multi-point, multi-instrument observations of space weather conditions is of critical importance for validating numerical models, improving accuracy of space weather forecasts, and understanding system-level physics of the underlying plasma processes. Combining event lists obtained from different missions often faces significant obstacles such as inconsistent time formats and unit systems, lack of standardized metadata fields, incompatible treatment of measurement errors and data gaps, etc.
The Heliophysics Event (HPEvent) List format has been developed to resolve most of these problems through a standardized multi-platform event list architecture facilitating cross-mission event detection, tracking and investigation. HPEvent is a plain text data format combined with commonly used metadata entries. The metadata makes it possible to properly interpret typical event lists and can point to external sources of information related to the data. The HPEvent format is designed to be easily read and parsed, and if necessary be converted to a VOTable and other commonly used formats.
Our HPEvent site is dedicated to promoting HPEvent standards as well as the available software tools for working with HPE files. We present a newly developed library of IDL codes, the Heliophysics Event List Conversion (HPEC) package, enabling a run-time creation of HPE files, and an easy conversion of non-HPEvent data formats into the plain text and VoTable versions of the HPEvent format. The designed toolkit also contains procedures for an easy reading, browsing, merging, and plotting event lists. Most of the modules are vectorized and use a platform-independent syntax. Basic instructions and examples of HPEC usage are provided.