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The German Grid (D-Grid) Initiative enters its fourth year

Interim statement and presentation of the Projects

Abb1.: Timeline der D-Grid Initiative

After several years of preparations, the first D-Grid projects began their work in September 2005. All projects of this initial phase have now reached completion, including the addition of a six-month extension for some projects. A number of projects of the second phase have successfully undergone an interim evaluation. Those of the third phase were selected after a comprehensive appraisal process and will soon be underway. As such, this is a good opportunity to take stock.

In total, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has invested more than 100 million Euros in developing the D-Grid. This comprises almost 40 initial projects, with up to 10 institutions participating in a single project. This is indicative of the wide scope of support. Figure 1 provides an overview of the timescale of the various projects that are introduced individually on the following pages. Investment has also been made in computers and storage with the aim of making it possible to apply new grid approaches to productive operation without interrupting routine operations in the institutions that house these resources. All recipients of funding have also allocated some of their own funds to the projects as well as the operation of the resources, thereby demonstrating their interest in the D-Grid.

The key aim of the project funding is to simplify the use of IT services and resources in the areas of science and enterprise via grid technology. Because industrial enterprises generally only switch to a new technology directly before it goes operational, this initial phase was of primary relevance to academic areas of application. The experiences and results gathered from these projects will facilitate an accelerated introduction to this technology in subsequent phases, particularly in the case of smaller companies. We are now in this phase. It is therefore appropriate to consider what conclusions we can draw from the projects that have been carried out so far. To this end, our web pages introduce each of the projects individually. In the first instance, this will allow you, the reader, to gain an impression of the diversity of the projects and, therefore, also the scope of potential application for the grid technology. Secondly, it serves to expand the horizons of participants in the individual projects by providing insight into other projects and possibly stimulating new ideas.

A further, extremely important function of our web presentation is to thank all project participants for their dedication in carrying out the projects, the project management agency for its constructive support of the projects and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research for its provision of funding.

I hope that studying this presentation will give you significant insight into the D-Grid.