RHEL on VCE is ESA's new tech launchpad

Space agency now orbiting new private cloud

The European Space Agency (ESA) has rolled Red Hat Enterprise Linux into its ESA Cloud, an ongoing cloud computing rollout.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux is, as the company notes, just one of the platforms being used in the ESA Cloud.

The cloud covers software development and testing; satellite data reprocessing; document management; and other IT services.

The deployment will let the agency's IT team monitor computing resources in real time, improve its chargeback operations, and optimise the available capacity.

The rollout has been completed in Frascati in Rome, with a second disaster recovery site on the way in Darmstadt, Germany.

The x86-based servers have been provided by VCE, with Orange Business providing system management services.

Orange, which has run a number of ESA IT projects since 2000, was appointed to manage the private cloud implementation in December 2014. At the time, the company described its aim as building a “common, secure and rapidly provisioned infrastructure that will span the entire organisation”.

The agency had previously (in 2009) trialled various external cloud offerings including Oracle as a service and Amazon EC2 to shift data collected by its GAIA satellite into its AGIS analytical system.

From science through to the back office, the ESA has 2,200 staff spread across Europe and outposts like its launch facility in French Guiana.

The ESA has a 2011-dated discussion of its cloud efforts at Slideshare. ®

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