University research aided by shared £900,000 Jisc data centre

A shared Jisc data centre to support the requirements of university research has been set up with funding of around £900,000 from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

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A shared Jisc data centre to support the requirements of university research has been set up with funding of around £900,000 from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

At launch, the Jisc data centre will house the IT of a consortium of six of the UK’s most successful scientific and academic organisations. The new data centre which will grow to more than 800 racks of server capacity.

The initial users of the data centre are University College London, Kings College London, The Sanger Institute, The Francis Crick Institute, The London School of Economics & Political Science and Queen Mary University of London.

Tim Marshall, executive director for Jisc technologies and CEO of the Janet academic network, said: “By having the shared data centre users can access off-site data storage and services. This world-leading facility will mean that users can consolidate their sensitive data in one safe environment and increase collaboration, whilst saving money both in terms of their operational costs and by not having to repeatedly procure facilities."

The data centre will be connected to the Janet network core and part of its backbone, to facilitate cost-effective access and meet bandwidth requirements of large data sets.

Marshall said: "As space becomes premium on campus this is a significant step on the journey to the cloud and already indications are that this will be a major breakthrough for the UK education and research community.”

Data centre provider Infinity will operate the facility at its flagship Slough data centre. The design will combine traditional tier three, low resiliency and high density infrastructure platforms, ensuring that the infrastructure is "workload focused and value driven", said Jisc.

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