Advances and innovations in the field of engineering are key factors to sustain and strengthen the success and recognition of Germany’s leading role in industry world-wide. Small and medium-sized enterprises are of particular importance in this context.
Today, the development of innovative and reliable products is often enabled and facilitated by the use of Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) methods. The most essential part of CAE are computer based simulations that often require a tremendous amount of hardware resources along with the expertise for its setup and administration. Thus, especially for small and medium-sized enterprises, cloud technology can provide an opportunity to use reliable state-of-the-art computing resources without the need for any in-advance investments in hardware, software and personnel. However, such enterprises are often not willing or allowed to process sensitive data on resources of large and anonymous cloud providers. This yields a large market potential for smaller data centers operating on a local basis guaranteeing the processing and storage of data within German jurisdiction as well as providing personal feedback and support.
In the project Cloud4E – Trusted Cloud Computing for Engineering – a local data center, the GWDG from Göttingen, a simulation software provider, ITI from Dresden, and a medium-sized engineering enterprise, ERAS from Göttingen, cooperated with two research institutes, the Fraunhofer EAS (a branch of Fraunhofer IIS) from Dresden and the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg, in order to define and implement a software stack that enables an easy porting of existing simulation software to a cloud service.
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The project duration was three years (February 1, 2012 – January 31, 2015)