Defense Information Systems Agency will spend $45 million on a private storage cloud for intelligence and surveillance imagery.
New York's 32-Story Data 'Fortress'
(click image for slideshow)
The Defense Information Systems Agency plans to award a $45 million cloud computing contract for an intelligence and surveillance information storage cloud that could eventually require four exabytes of storage, according to a procurement document posted online.
The document, a sole source justification, says that DISA will award the contract to systems integrator Alliance Technology Group, which claims expertise in federal government private cloud computing and has done business with NASA and the Navy, among other federal agencies. According to the document, Alliance will provide DISA's Enterprise Services arm, which provides IT services to the rest of the military, with "state-of-the-art global storage capabilities."
Such storage capabilities would allow the agency to securely store "hundreds of billions of objects" in a way that users could access the data across multiple networks. Data being stored in the cloud would include standard and high-definition video, LIDAR images, infrared and electro-optical images and Wide-Area Motion Imagery.
Many of the details of the contract have been redacted, but storage will come in 10 Pbyte units tied together via an IP network and hosted in a secure data center facility. The service will support "interface standards for ingesting, accessing and managing geospatial data" and the data will be searchable and accessible on mobile devices.
While federal agencies and intelligence agencies in particular are working to deal with a deluge of data, exabyte volumes remain relatively unheard-of. The largest stores of data are still largely measured in the tens of petabytes. However, the need for exabyte storage is far from out of the question. In a call with reporters last week, National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins said that the Obama administration's new brain mapping effort may require the processing of information in the yottabyte range, which would be a million exabytes.
Information blacked out in the DISA procurement document include the location of the data center, part of the description of the need for a data storage cloud, the name of Alliance's service, the names of a number of government officials involved in the contract and what appear to be references to specific agencies.
While DISA already operates its own data centers, the agency says in the procurement document that DISA's Defense Enterprise Computing Centers don't have the necessary capacity and that DISA doesn't have the necessary funding to deliver homegrown versions of the capabilities that the agency needs.
On a website providing an overview of Alliance's cloud services, the company says that it can meet FedRAMP requirements and other security requirements and adds that its private cloud services offer numerous features and benefits, including reduced costs, audited data centers, and the ability to map capacity to demand.
2014 Next-Gen WAN SurveyWhile 68% say demand for WAN bandwidth will increase, just 15% are in the process of bringing new services or more capacity online now. For 26%, cost is the problem. Enter vendors from Aryaka to Cisco to Pertino, all looking to use cloud to transform how IT delivers wide-area connectivity.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.
Top IT Trends to Watch in Financial ServicesIT pros at banks, investment houses, insurance companies, and other financial services organizations are focused on a range of issues, from peer-to-peer lending to cybersecurity to performance, agility, and compliance. It all matters.
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of October 9, 2016. We'll be talking with the InformationWeek.com editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."