Name: e-Infrastructure CZ

Institution: CESNET, z. s. p. o.

Coordinator: Ing. Jan Gruntorád, CSc.; jan.gruntorad@cesnet.cz


e-INFRA CZ provides unique e-infrastructure for research, development and innovation in the Czech Republic and offers a fully transparent environment ensuring comprehensive capacities and resources for transferring, storing and processing scientific data for all entities engaged in research, development and innovation across various sectors. Thus, it establishes a communication, information, storage and computer platform for research, development and innovation at both the national and international levels and provides an extensive and comprehensive portfolio of ICT services, without which modern research, development and innovation could not be carried out. The e-INFRA CZ consists of (1) a highly efficient national communication infrastructure; (2) a national grid and cloud infrastructure; (3) the most powerful and state-of-art supercomputer systems in the Czech Republic; and (4) high-capacity data storage. Other tools and services, such as ICT resource access management, tools supporting remote collaboration, and tools ensuring secure communication and data protection, which collectively enable an efficient yet manifold application, make up an inherent part of the e-infrastructure while contributing to increased added value. e‑INFRA CZ interconnects all 3 national e-infrastructures in the Czech Republic – CESNET (e-infrastructure CESNET), CERIT-SC (CERIT Scientific Cloud) and IT4Innovations (IT4Innovationss National Supercomputing Center), all incorporated in the Roadmap of Large Research Infrastructures of the Czech Republic since 2010, thus taking a joint step towards integrating them more closely. Those research organisations operating e-INFRA CZ can boast of more than 20 years of experience in providing high-quality, flexible, secure and reliable comprehensive ICT services for the research community in the Czech Republic. The services provided are cutting-edge and fully comparable with similar foreign e-infrastructures. The basis of the Czech e-infrastructure is the CESNET2 National Research and Education Network (NREN). This backbone e-infrastructure was designed as a multi-layer system interconnected across individual layers, both by means of research projects and user networks and foreign research networks, the GÉANT pan-European network and the GLIF (Global Lambda Integrated Facility) experimental infrastructure. The communication infrastructure offers parallel support of IPv4 and IPv6 protocols with a number of advanced functions and features, and provides selected services in individual network layers, in particular lambda services and remote access to user research equipment in real time. At the same time, e-INFRA CZ provides extensive computing capacities, the basis of which consists of a cluster network and powerful systems interconnected within the National Grid and Cloud Infrastructure – the MetaCentrum. This is a heterogeneous (with regards to various types of computing capacities and owners) and dynamically changing (with regards to hardware and software life cycle) system that is interconnected with common tools and technologies for the administration and management of the entire e-infrastructure’s operation and creates a single environment for the provision of services. At present, two large, and on the Czech national level, unique supercomputers, Anselm and Salomon, form the peak of the computational output of e-INFRA CZ, the latter being one of the most powerful supercomputers in the entire world. Another inherent component of e‑INFRA CZ is its data storage infrastructure. This high-capacity data storage is currently distributed across four geographically independent localities across the Czech Republic. Storage systems are accessible through a number of protocols, including NFSv4, rsync, scp, FTPS, the Globus (formerly Globus Online) application and the dCache system. Sophisticated applications include the FileSender file depository and its own storage cloud. The computing and storage facilities are closely interconnected with the communications network, thus creating a comprehensive environment for the processing of bulk data. The key authentication and authorisation infrastructure governing access to the e-infrastructure is the Czech academic identity federation eduID.cz. This federation interconnects identity providers (entities from which the users originate) and service providers, and is a member of the eduGAIN pan-European inter-federation. e-INFRA CZ also operates the national node of the eduroam worldwide academic roaming. The e-infrastructure’s security is provided for by an internationally-accredited CESNET-CERTS security team in collaboration with other similar teams from other e-INFRA CZ members. In order to efficiently take advantage of this unique infrastructure, regular workshops and training sessions are held, both at the national and international levels. All resources in the possession of e‑INFRA CZ are made available to the entire Czech research community, including university students, through an open access regime. e-INFRA CZ systematically participates in the research activities of its users, bringing powerful resources and ICT expertise necessary to perform research, development and innovation par excellence in every scientific branch. By efficiently utilizing available ICT resources, e-INFRA CZ contributes towards substantially speeding-up research, development and innovation in individual areas of user professional interest. Further e-infrastructure development will include the continuous innovation, development and experimental operation of new components in order for the e-infrastructure to continue to provide excellent services to its users. When developing the e-infrastructure, the greatest emphasis is placed on user needs and modern technology trends, not only from the point of view of capacities provided, but also from the point of view of user security, data protection, economic efficiency and environmental impact. No less emphasis is placed on the development of human resources to ensure a sufficient number of experts necessary to provide comprehensive e-infrastructure services of the highest quality. e-INFRA CZ is a Czech national node of the following European and global research infrastructures: the GÉANT European communication infrastructure, the EGI European Grid Infrastructure, the European HPC PRACE (Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe) e-infrastructure, and the GLIF Global Experimental Infrastructure. e-INFRA CZ is also a member of other European initiatives, such as the EOSC (European Open Science Cloud), the EuroHPC (European High-Performance Computing), the HiPEAC (European Network on High Performance and Embedded Architecture and Compilation) and the ETP4HPC (European Technology Platform for High Performance Computing).