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Felix Bach
Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC)

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bwDataArchive - long-term storage of research data

bwDataArchive provides the service infrastructure for long-term storage of research data from academia in Baden-Württemberg, the Helmholtz association and European data infrastructures.
Interior of StorageTek tape library at NERSC (2),  Foto: Wikimedia Commons, Derrick Coetzee

The Service bwDataArchive

The technical service infrastructure bwDataArchive, provides archival storage for research and other public institutions in the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg. Data is stored at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and comprises trustworthy large data storage for a period of ten years and more. The service enables a qualified implementation of the recommendation of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) regarding the safeguarding and storing of research data. Further information: https://www.rda.kit.edu/english 


Data from scientific experiments, from measurements, analysis and simulations, have to be stored at KIT long-term. The storage of this data isn't only important because of legal reasons, it also commits because of its historical value. At KIT's Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC) the quantity of these data will increase as KIT will become the central archive location of the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg. Within the states project 'bwDataArchiv' (as project name without 'e'), supported by the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Science, Research, and the Arts (MWK) the SCC will further expand its technical infrastructure for the long-time scientific data storage from research institutions and libraries, and also from the high performance computing of the University of Stuttgart (HLRS).
Within the 'bwDataArchiv' project, technologies for a structured, reliable and secure long-term storage of more than an Exabyte have to be developed and deployed to be used until 2020.
The 'bwDataArchiv' addresses among others, these interesting questions:

  • How to simplify the data storage process for a non IT confident scientific community?
  • Which safety-related aspects are important for the long-term storage?
  • How to efficiently ensure the data integrity of hundreds of Petabytes of data?


In the founding project established and reliable techniques for long-term digital data storage have to be selected and deployed. The objective is the development of a technical infrastructure for long-term storage and the establishment of a service as the basis for a safe storage of scientific and cultural relevant data.

Promotion and Cooperation

The 'bwDataArchive' project is supported by the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts Baden Wuerttemberg and it cooperates with DFG project RADAR, the state project BWDataDiss, with different scientific communities, and also with the international projects EUDAT, Human Brain Project (HBP) and the LHC Computing Grid (WLGC).