Gaia Project

Moving the Gaia project’s data processing to the cloud provided ESA with savings of around 50% compared to using in-house hardware. At the same time it provides a level of scalability which means that the work will be notably accelerated.

ESA's ambitious Gaia project aims to create a three-dimensional map of unprecedented size and precision charting the composition, formation and evolution of over one billion stars (around 1% of our Galaxy).

We have provided state of the art architectural solutions for different areas of the project including data management, High Performance Computing, creating a development platform for all the international teams involved and project management.

How we helped

  • Design of a Cloud-based solution for the data processing reducing its cost by approximately 50% whilst increasing the flexibility of the testing activities
  • Collaboration in the implementation of a distributed computing framework to improve performance.
  • Deployment of a development platform that allows the different teams to work in a distributed environment enabling release management, automated testing, continuous integration and quality assurance.
  • Database tuning.

Results

  • Substantial cost reduction: the developed solution provides an estimated reduction of 50% of Total cost of ownership (TCO)
  • Higher performance: Improved performance in the distributed framework being 6x, 7x times faster (in different areas of the processing)
  • Productivity boost due to our development platform.

"The Gaia AGIS Cloud experiment has been very successful for us. It indicates that bringing the data processing to The Cloud can provide us with savings of up 50% compared to using in house hardware. An additional advantage is that it gives us the ability to scale to far more processors that we could have in house which means essentially that we can finish the job sooner"
William O'Mullane, Gaia Science Operations Development Manager, European Space Agency