NSF Grant


Award Abstract # 2138811

OAC: Piloting the National Science Data Fabric: A Platform Agnostic Testbed for Democratizing Data Delivery

NSF Org Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure (OAC)
Initial Amendment Date September 17, 2021
Latest Amendment Date September 17, 2021
Award Number 2138811
Award Instrument Standard Grant
Program Manager Bogdan Mihaila
OAC Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure (OAC)
CSE Direct For Computer & Info Scie & Enginr
Start Date October 1, 2021
End Date September 30, 2024 (Estimated)
Total Intended Award Amount $5,609,259.00
Total Awarded Amount to Date $5,609,259.00
Funds Obligated to Date FY 2021 = $5,609,259.00
History of Investigator Valerio Pascucci (Principal Investigator) pascucci@acm.org
Frank Wuerthwein (Co-Principal Investigator)
Alexander Szalay (Co-Principal Investigator)
John Allison (Co-Principal Investigator)
Michela Taufer (Co-Principal Investigator)
Awardee Sponsored Research Office University of Utah
75 S 2000 E
UT US 84112-8930
Sponsor Congressional District 02
Primary Place of Performance University of Utah
75 S 2000 E
Salt Lake City
UT US 84112-8930
Primary Place of Performance  
Congressional District 02
DUNS ID 009095365
Parent DUNS ID 009095365
Primary Program Source 040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Program Reference Code(s)  
Program Element Code(s) 7231
Award Agency Code 4900
Fund Agency Code 4900
Assistance Listing Number(s) 47.070


Ongoing investments from NSF and other agencies into shared experimental and computing facilities increase data generation by orders of magnitude and presents a challenge for universal, easy, and fast access to data by users and may limit the scientific impact of such facilities. This pilot seeks to demonstrate a trans-disciplinary National Science Data Fabric (NSDF) integrating access to and use of shared storage, networking, computing, and educational resources and, in doing so, will help democratize data-driven sciences through the development of a cyberinfrastructure (CI) platform designed for equitable access. This pilot connects an open network of researchers gathered around earth science, astronomy, biology, chemistry, physics, and materials science, to deploy a testbed for individual and shared scientific use. Supporting the IceCube neutrino observatory and the XenonNT dark matter detector will advance the understanding of the evolution of galaxies and the nature of dark matter and dark energy. Supporting the Materials Common enables the fast-paced design of new materials in critical fields such as energy, security, environment, and healthcare. Active involvement of Historically Black Colleges, the Minority Serving Cyberinfrastructure Consortium, and of Hispanic Serving Institutions assures true democratization of data-driven science and unleashes the intellectual potential of a genuinely diverse scientific community presenting the best potential for US innovation.

The National Science Data Fabric (NSDF) pilot builds a testbed experimenting with critical technology needed to democratize data-driven sciences by constructing a CI platform designed for equitable access. In particular, NSDF experiments with key technologies that empower user communities to develop their solutions and support domain-specific requirements while avoiding duplication of technology. A programmable Content Delivery Network (CDN) will be a central component that interoperates with different appliances and storage solutions ranging from leadership-class computing facilities, campus-wide computing resources, commercial cloud, and research labs of individual investigators. With this strategy, NSDF connects storage, compute, and networking components with a software stack that empowers end-users with scalable tools that are easy to use, integrate and scale. Community-driven education and outreach will guarantee equitable access to all resources and engage an open network of universities, including minority-serving institutions in a federated data fabric configurable for individual and shared scientific use. By offering a shared, modular, containerized data delivery environment, operating at the best economies of scale, the NSDF pilot will demonstrate a key technology to fill the “missing middle” in the national computational infrastructure and will help address the “missing millions” challenge of American talent in STEM.

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 2138811.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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