The Research Data Facility (RDF)

It is commonly recognised that research data are an important research output and our scientific competitiveness depends on our ability to store, manage, curate and share these data. In 2011 a proposal by the University of Edinburgh for the establishment of a Research Data Facility (RDF) to store data from the national supercomputing facility was awarded £ 2M from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and a further £ 3.5 M from the first e-infrastructure fund. Since installation the RDF has been in service for users from around the UK. The RDF has received further funding to enable an upgrade and an expansion to the facility and is expected to run until 2019.

The UK Research Data Facility is a large data storage and analysis platform for active research data associated with computational science.

EPSRC envisage that the RDF will be used to:

  • Enable further analysis of computational research and experimental data.
  • Allow storage so that further publication of data can be achieved.
  • Allow storage of data that is valuable to a project community e.g. a reference data set.

The RDF consists of 23PB of usable storage, with an additional 48 PB of backup tape capacity for disaster recovery purposes. The service also includes Data Transfer Nodes (DTNs) for transferring data onto/off the RDF disks and a Data Analytic Cluster (DAC) for analysing data on the RDF disks. Expertise to support the UK research community in the use of the RDF is provided by EPCC.

For further information, please visit the Research Data Facility website.