Saving Data Permanently and Securely

New storage cluster allows for large volumes of data to be stored.

Being able to securely store scientific data is of critical importance for large research institutions. At the Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC), terabytes of data accumulate every day, which must be safely stored for the long term. For this reason, the German Research Foundation (DFG) made a recommendation to the Ministry for Innovation, Science, and Research of the Federal State of North-Rhine Westphalia (MIWF) that it finance a storage cluster for long-term, secure data storage. The MIWF has now allocated 736,000 Euro to finance the project, and the total investment comes to approximately 850,000 Euro.

The research and development of interaction technologies always entails large volumes of data, which must be saved for long periods of time. The smart apartment located at CITEC, for instance, stores several terabytes of data recorded by the sensors throughout the apartment every single day.

Seven of the 13 computers are housed in the CITEC building. Photo: CITEC  “The storage cluster financed by the MIWF consists of a total of 13 computers, which have a total storage capacity of over 1,124 terabytes,” says Professor Dr. Philipp Cimiano, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Technology at Bielefeld University and Head of the Semantic Computing Research Group at CITEC. Seven of these computers are housed in the CITEC Building, and the other six are located at Bielefeld University. These computers store the data, which are also mirrored in a separate storage system. Should one of these systems fail, the data are still available on the other computers.

“The Network Attached Storage Cluster (NASC) is a connection of the 13 computers to a large storage module, which is comparable to a cloud. The advantage of this is that only CITEC researchers have access to the storage cluster,” explains CITEC researcher Professor Cimiano. This ensures not only secure access, but also long-term storage. The system’s capacity will suffice for four to five years, thus making the storage cluster an investment in CITEC’s future.

More information is available online at:

Professor Dr. Philipp Cimiano, Bielefeld University,
Head of the Semantic Computing Research Group
Telephone: +49 (0)521 106- 12249