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Institute for Advanced Simulation (IAS)

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Federation Services

The group Federation Services conducts research and develops software for accessing compute and data resources and securely integrating them into federations. These activities are pursued in collaboration with partner institutes and in the context of international projects such as the Human Brain Project (HBP) and EUDAT.

Our research and development activities include topics such as

  • Federated access to high-performance computing systems
  • Security: single sign-on, federated identity management, resource sharing
  • Federated access to Cloud storage resources such as OpenStack Swift or Amazon S3
  • User defined application environments using virtual machines and application containers
  • Data and metadata management
  • Scientific workflows across federated, heterogeneous resources
  • High-performance, firewall-friendly file transfer (UFTP)
  • Tools for accessing and managing very large data sets
  • Alternative programming models such as map/reduce, stream processing or tuple spaces
  • End-user client software and APIs (web portals, RESTful APIs, ...)

Rich Client

The main focus of our work is the UNICORE middleware, which provides front-end clients and unified service interfaces for accessing a wide range of compute and data resources. UNICORE seamlessly integrates the various services and back-ends into federations, providing secure communication, flexible end-user authentication, policy- and role-based authorization as well as many integration options with existing AAI infrastructures.

The adoption of standards (OASIS, W3C, OGF), the re-use of existing open-source software and effective, lightweight quality assurance measures (strong focus on unit testing, code coverage, and continuous integration) help us produce high-quality and maintainable open source software.


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