The Vera C. Rubin Observatory, formerly known as the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), is under construction on Cerro Pachón Mountain, Chile. Once it is operational, it should allow us to unravel certain mysteries of the Universe. Scientists especially hope it helps them learn more about dark matter.
On December 9, 2020, we learned that the Vera C. Rubin Observatory had taken a new step. He said in a statement that he had signed a three-year contract with Google to store his data of astronomical observations in the cloud of the web giant. According to key stakeholders, this agreement will allow sharing of scientific information on a "large scale" around the world through Internet services.
Until the Rubin observatory is fully operational in 2023, Google will host the Interim Data Facility (IDF). This installation will be responsible for collecting preliminary data from the observatory.
An observatory that aspires to advance scientific research
Initially, the data collected by the IDF will be made available to around 100 researchers. Rubin's observatory will then opt for wider dissemination. For Bob Blum, the observatory's director of operations, this data will be essential to advance scientific research.
According to him, it is “the only experiment which collects data on the solar system, the expansion of the universe, the variable and explosive stars, but also those which constitute our Milky Way. "He added that the use of an" established and reliable infrastructure "such as Google will allow them to ensure that they will be willing to provide information to their community once telescopes, cameras and systems data will be in focus.
A platform specially dedicated to science
Google has indicated that the interim database it will host for the Rubin Observatory will be very large. To access it, users will have to go through a scientific platform that uses a special browser. This will prevent them from downloading the data they need.
The Mountain View firm said the observatory is expected to generate around 500 petabytes (or nearly 500,000 terabytes) of information. For Mike Daniels, vice president of the global public sector of Google Cloud, “the advances we are seeing in astronomy indicate a growing appetite for data that can only be processed at scale and speed. from the cloud. "
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He concluded by explaining that this agreement allows the Rubin Observatory to benefit from “low cost cloud data storage. "