February 2006
International Cyberinfrastructure: Activities Around the Globe
John O’Callaghan, Australian Partnership for Advanced Computing

3. The APAC National Grid Program

The APAC National Grid is being built through a program involving over 120 professionals in 24 organisations, with an effective full-time effort of around 50 people. The program is currently in a development phase, with an operational phase starting in early 2007.

The program consists of two kinds of projects that collectively are developing the National Grid infrastructure and delivering services to users. The application support projects involve working with specific research teams in the following areas: astronomy, high-energy physics, chemistry, bioinformatics, earth systems science and geosciences. Table 1 below lists the projects and their aims.

Virtual Observatory Data Warehousing
Efficient, standardised access to key Australian and international astronomical data collections within the Australian Virtual Observatory (Aus-VO).
Gravity Wave Research
Access to Australian computing and storage resources, along with environmental and interferometer detection equipment, and interfacing this grid infrastructure with those of international collaborators.
Virtual Observatory Theory Portals
Services for job configuration, job submission to available grids, and subsequent monitoring for a wide range of theoretical astrophysics codes with access to the Aus-VO.
Belle and ATLAS Experiments
On-line access to the Belle data (10 TBytes per year) produced by the KEK laboratory in Japan through a federation of SRB databases. Deployment of the LHC Computing Grid (LCG-2) toolkit to support implementation tests and physics simulations as part of the Atlas project.
International Lattice Data Grid
Implement a node of the International Lattice Data Grid (ILDG) in Australia to locate and access expensive lattice simulation data.
Computational Chemistry
A uniform web-based interface to computational molecular science codes allowing data exchange between different codes and unified operations on a set of molecules.
Genome Annotation
A distributed Genome Annotation System (using the Rice Genome as a model) involving a local Ensembl database and a grid-enabled Blast system.
Molecular Docking
A portal for molecular docking applications using a wide variety of chemical databases, with interfaces for automated analysis, visualization and storage of virtual screening results.
Earth Systems
Access to Australian data sets related to oceans, atmospheres, Antarctica and climate change using OpenDAP protocols and to computational models producing global data sets of land surface fluxes, state variables and related hydrologic quantities.
Geoscience Modelling
A workflow service to support mantle convection modeling accessing using open standards (based on XML) to access geological and geophysical data.
Visualization and simulation of tectonic plate movements based on geological and geophysical observations.
Table 1. Application Support Projects in the APAC Grid Program

The infrastructure projects are developing and providing services to satisfy the requirements of the applications. These projects cover the areas of computing infrastructure, information infrastructure, user interfaces and visualisation infrastructure and collaboration infrastructure.

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Reference this article
O'Callaghan, J. "A National Grid Infrastructure for Australian Researchers," CTWatch Quarterly, Volume 2, Number 1, February 2006. http://www.ctwatch.org/quarterly/articles/2006/02/a-national-grid-infrastructure-for-australian-researchers/

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