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The Project

Vision: Transforming science through data-driven discovery.

Mission: Our mission is to design, deploy, and expand a national cyberinfrastructure for life sciences research, and to train scientists in its use.

 

The project

CyVerse is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Directorate for Biological Sciences. We are a dynamic virtual organization led by the University of Arizona to fulfill a broad mission that spans our partner institutions: Texas Advanced Computing Center, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, and the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

CyVerse fills a niche created by the computing epoch and a rapidly evolving world. Developing solutions to today’s grand scientific challenges means that we must understand how the organisms that contribute to our food, fuels, and ecosystem are shaped by interactions with their environment. CyVerse provides life scientists with powerful computational infrastructure to handle huge datasets and complex analyses, thus enabling data-driven discovery. Our powerful extensible platforms provide data storage, bioinformatics tools, image analyses, cloud services, APIs, and more.

While originally created with the name iPlant Collaborative to serve U.S. plant science communities, CyVerse cyberinfrastructure is germane to all life sciences disciplines and works equally well on data from plants, animals, or microbes. By democratizing access to supercomputing capabilities, we provide a crucial resource to enable scientists to find solutions for the future. Community-driven needs shape our mission. We rely upon your feedback to provide the infrastructure you need most to advance your science, development, and educational agenda.

What is cyberinfrastructure?

Cyberinfrastructure (also known as CI or computational infrastructure) provides solutions to the challenges of large-scale computational science. Just as physical infrastructure like laboratories, DNA sequencing centers, and greenhouses make it possible to collect data, the hardware, software, and people that comprise cyberinfrastructure make it possible to store, share, and analyze data.

Cyberinfrastructure development is supported by the National Science Foundation to empower all scientists in the use of high performance computing and large data resources. Using cyberinfrastructure, teams of researchers can attempt to answer questions that previously were unapproachable because the computational requirements were too large, too complex, or simply unknown to some researchers.

CyVerse cyberinfrastructure includes:

  • A data storage facility
  • An interactive, web-based, analytical platform
  • Cloud infrastructure to use remote servers for computation, analysis, and storage
  • Web authentication and security services
  • Support for scaling computational algorithms to run on large, high-speed computers
  • Education and training in how to use cyberinfrastructure
  • People with expertise in all of the above

History

A natural progression from the iPlant Collaborative — a project originally created to support plant sciences — CyVerse enables research in other domains. Advances in research technology have enabled scientists to amass unprecedented amounts of data. The National Science Foundation created the iPlant Collaborative in 2008 to address a major bottleneck in biological research, namely the inability of traditional computing technology to meet computational challenges and support the cross-discipline collaboration needed to solve today’s most pressing questions in plant sciences.

From its inception, iPlant quickly grew into a mature organization providing powerful resources and offering scientific and technical support services to researchers nationally and internationally. Other research communities soon initiated large-scale cyberinfrastructure projects similar to iPlant, many of these leveraging iPlant’s open-source components, creating implicit compatibility between systems.

In 2013 the NSF renewed funding for iPlant with a revised mandate to serve all life sciences. Thus, in 2015 iPlant was rebranded to CyVerse to emphasize our expanded mission. Answering the need of an era of data science, CyVerse makes broadly applicable computational resources available across the life sciences.