Have your say on an EOSC-hub proposal for the EOSC technical architecture

EOSC-hub has produced a deliverable which proposes an open and participatory approach to the definition of the EOSC Technical Architecture.

Your feedback is very welcome – participate in the survey now!

The document proposes the definition of a reference Technical Architecture for EOSC that facilitates access to services, lower barriers to integrate and composes services and promotes the usage of services between adjacent communities. This is achieved identifying key technical functions, named building blocks, for each of the EOSC service category (Federation, Access Enabling, Common and Thematic) and defining related technical specifications that include an high-level architecture, endorsed EOSC standards and APIs and interoperability guidelines. In this way, EOSC ‘compliant’ services will offer well-established and documented interfaces for usage and integration, based on well-known standard or APIs, facilitating:

  • their exploitation from user communities willing to create new scientific services that could rely on well-established and documented interfaces for the integration. An example of exploitation of EOSC services is when a community creates a new scientific workflow reusing EOSC federation and common services, like AAI, accounting, Cloud orchestrator and/or data management solutions.
  • the combined usage of EOSC services. Indeed the adoption of well-known standards and interfaces will very-likely reduce the cost to integrate services. For example, two accounting infrastructures can be made easily interoperable if they use the same standard usage record format, in such case accounting data extracted from them can be merged and presented in a unique view. Another example is about data processing and data management services implementing compliant interfaces that enable a jointly usage by a thematic services.

The proposal in the deliverable is put forward for further discussion, and feedback is welcome. We propose this document to initiate a community activity to populate the EOSC technical architecture identifying key technical functions/building blocks per service category and, for each of those, defining a technical specification that includes an high-level architecture, suggested EOSC standards, APIs and interoperability guidelines. A consultation on the proposals has been launched to collect feedback from stakeholders. Fill in the survey and send us your feedback! The survey is open until the end of September.

How commercial cloud providers can contribute to the EOSC: the HNSciCloud experience

The EGI Foundation, CERN and STFC are pleased to announce that the Elastic Cloud Computing Cluster (EC3) framework can now be used to deploy virtual clusters on commercial clouds with HNSciCloud vouchers.

The voucher scheme was proposed by Exoscale, the IaaS computing resources for the RHEA Cloud platform, as a result of the collaboration with the HNSciCloud  Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) project.

The Exoscale vouchers provide a pre-paid access for users to a commercial cloud service provider for a specific monetary value and allow researchers with limited computing resources to test different configurations and choose the best service offer for their needs.

 The vouchers aim to:

  • Encourage the uptake of the resulted HNSciCloud pilot services for limited scale usage.
  • Allow commercial cloud service providers to contribute to the EOSC.
  • Offer a convenient mean to finance the use of EOSC services and increase the user base.

Want to try it?

  • Access the EOSC portal marketplace.
  • Select the Elastic Cloud Compute Cluster (EC3) platform from the list of available services and submit a service-order request.
  • Two different service offers are available to any authorized users – default and voucher.
  • The vouchers proposed by the HNSciCloud project will have a validity of one year from the date of issue and can be redeemable against any service included in the contractor’s pilot platform.

Guidelines and more information:

  • Each Exoscale voucher is worth around 400 euros. A total of 10 vouchers are available for running applications for scientific purposes.
  • All vouchers should be consumed before the end of 2019.
  • When the request is approved, the user will be notified by email by the EOSC portal Marketplace.
  • Finally, access the EC3 portal and click on the HNSciCloud button, in the deployment section, to access the commercial cloud provider.
  • More info in the EC3’s documentation.

New service level agreement: EGI and MRILab

The EGI Foundation is pleased to announce a service level agreement (SLA) between the EGI service provider IFCA-LCG2 and the Institute for Molecular Instrumentation and Imaging (MRILab). The SLA is valid until August 2020.

MRILab is a research center based at the Polytechnic University of Valencia in Spain. The main focus of the MRILab is to investigate new techniques of scientific instrumentation for imaging applications in the biomedical field.

The established SLA will allow MRILab to use EGI Cloud Compute resources for their research activities. In total, IFCA-LCG2 has pledged 64 virtual CPUs and 64 GB of RAM.

Diego Scardaci, Senior User Community Support at the EGI Foundation, facilitated the agreement and says: “It’s a pleasure to have enabled this agreement and continue to support the life sciences domain via the EGI service offer”.

The International Symposium on Grids and Clouds (ISGC) 2020

The International Symposium on Grids and Clouds (ISGC) 2020 will be held at Academia Sinica in Taipei, Taiwan from 8 to 13 March 2020. The main theme of ISGC 2020 is “Challenges in High Performance Data Analytics: Combining Approaches in HPC, HTC, Big Data and AI”.

The goal of ISGC 2020 is to create a face-to-face venue where individual communities and national representatives can present and share their contributions to the global puzzle and contribute thus to the solution of global challenges.

The call for papers is open until Monday 7 October 2019.

The programme is now online.

Find out all the details about the event.

New agreement supports the development of nuclear fusion technology

The EGI Foundation is pleased to announce a service level agreement (SLA) between the EGI providers CESGA and UNIV-LILLE and the UK Atomic Energy Authority to serve the EOSC-hub Fusion Competence Centre.

The Fusion Competence Centre is a research community established in the context of the EOSC-hub project with a purpose to support the development of nuclear fusion technologies as a clean and abundant source of energy, particularly with respect to plasma and engineering modelling.

This SLA allows the Fusion community to use EGI Cloud Compute and Online Storage services amounting to a total of 105 virtual CPU cores, 245 GB memory and 800 GB storage capacity.

The agreement is valid until 31 December 2020.

Giuseppe la Rocca, Technical Outreach Expert at the EGI Foundation, facilitated the agreement and says: “I am happy to have mediated this agreement and make sure the EGI services are used by a variety of research communities, at a larger scale and in the context of EOSC”.

Shaun de Witt, Principal Investigator for the Fusion Competence Centre, says “We are truly delighted to have this agreement in place. It will allow us to demonstrate to our user community both the feasibility and desirability of making use of cloud resources provided through EOSC. We anticipate that as cloud becomes increasingly adopted, this agreement can be extended and will allow us to drive down the time to science, and to the final end goal of providing cheap, clean electricity to help power the computers that will have made this possible”.

EGI signs agreement with LABSS

The EGI Foundation is pleased to announce a service level agreement (SLA) between the EGI provider IFCA and the Laboratory of Agent-Based Social Simulation (LABSS).

LABSS is an international research group working at the intersection of cognitive, social, and computational science based at the Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies (ISTC) of the National Research Council of Italy (CNR) in Rome.

LABSS will use EGI Cloud Compute resources amounting to 80 virtual CPUs and 1024 GB memory.

Enol Fernandez, Cloud Technologist at the EGI Foundation, says: “ We are very pleased to have signed this SLA and offer cloud resources to LABSS in their scientific quests. We look forward to similar collaborations”.

Find out more about the agreement.

European HTCondor Workshop 2019

The European HTCondor Workshop 2019 will be held in Italy, form 24 to 27 September, hosted by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre in Ispra, Lombardy, Italy.

The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission’s science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.

The workshop will be the fifth edition in Europe after the successful events at CERN in December 2014ALBA in February 2016DESY in June 2017 and RAL in September 2018.

The workshops are opportunities for novice and experienced users of HTCondor to learn, get help and have exchanges between them and with the HTCondor developers and experts. It is primarily addressed at users from EMEA, but open to everyone. The workshop consists of presentations, tutorials and “office hours” for consultancy. The HTCondor CE (Compute Element) will be covered prominently as well.

Registration is open until 4 September.

See all the details of the event.

Training: Introduction to EGI Notebooks

The EGI Foundation team will deliver a training on the EGI Notebooks service in Yerevan, Armenia, on September 27, co-located with the Eastern Partnership E-Infrastructure Conference.

This tutorial will introduce Jupyter and the open access EGI Notebooks service. The tutorial will go through the main features of the EGI Notebooks and show how to use it with Binder to implement Open Science. Participants will experience the system through hands-on exercises and can continue using these services after the training through the European Open Science Cloud. The tutorial will be relevant for researchers, and for programmers and IT-service providers who support research and education.

More information and how to register.

Upcoming EOSC-hub webinars

EOSC-hub will hold two webinars this July 2019:

The first webinar is entitled  “An EOSC-hub proposal for the EOSC Service Management System” and will be held on 23 July from 11am to 12:30pm. The webinar will introduce participants to the Service Management System developed by EOSC-hub for the European Open Science Cloud,  with a particular focus on the Service Portfolio Management as a key and highly strategic process. The structure of the EOSC service portfolios will be also presented. This management system is based on the FitSM standard for IT Service Management.

Who should attend: technical architects from research infrastructures and projects, current and interested service providers and research infrastructure managers.

More information and registration.

The second webinar is entitled “An EOSC-hub proposal for the EOSC Technical Architecture” and will be held on 24 July from 11am to 12:30pm. This webinar focus on describing the reference technical architecture for the European Open Science Cloud proposed by EOSC-hub. The proposed architecture is based on the concepts of service composability and interoperability.

Who should attend: service providers, users, members of other EOSC implementation projects including EOSC cluster projects, members of EOSC working groups, European and national e-infrastructures, European and national research infrastructures.

More information and registration.

New service level agreement: EGI and OBSEA

The EGI Foundation is pleased to announce a service level agreement (SLA) between the EGI resource providers INFN-CATANIA-STACK and OBSEA (part of EMSO-ERIC). The SLA is valid until May 2020.

OBSEA is an underwater cabled observatory deployed in 2009. This seafloor observatory is located 4 km off the Catalan Vilanova i la Geltru coast in a fishing protected area. It is connected to the coast by an energy and communications mixed cable. The main advantages of a cabled observatory are that it provides an uninterrupted power supply to the scientific instruments and offers a high bandwidth communication link. This way, real time data is available and problems encountered in battery powered systems are avoided.

With OBSEA, it is possible to perform a real time observation of multiple parameters in the marine environment.

The agreement with INFN-CATANIA-STACK will allow OBSEA to use EGI Cloud Compute and Online Storage services needed for their activities. In total, INFN-CATANIA-STACK pledged 16 GB of RAM and 200 GB of storage capacity.

Giuseppe La Rocca, Technical Outreach Expert at the EGI Foundation, facilitated the agreement and says: “It’s a pleasure to have mediated this service level agreement and we hope for a fruitful and long-term collaboration with OBSEA“.

Joaquin del Rio, Head of Obsea Observatory says: “We want to thanks EGI and INFN-CATANIA-STACK for their support on IT services. With such collaboration we expect to improve our data collection and outreach services to the general public and scientific community who access Obsea data. For our Obsea infrastructure, such collaboration is really very important to keep marine data generation alive!”