Data Distribution Platforms

Over the past decade there has been a dramatic growth in acquisition of data that has been critical to scientific progress and knowledge. Efficient access to the massive volumes of data being generated or collected and processing of these data to deliver insights is a major cyberinfrastructure challenge.  

The Advanced Cyberinfrastructure Development (ACID) Lab at the San Diego Supercomputer Center leverages Big data technologies and platforms to not just provide efficient access to these invaluable data but also High Performance Computing systems to meet the processing demands for generating key insights and promoting scientific breakthroughs. Some of the Big data distribution platforms developed by the ACID lab for national scale data intensive projects are described below.


The NSF funded OpenTopography project facilitates web-based access to high-resolution(meter to sub-meter scale), Earth science-oriented, topography data acquired with lidar and other technologies. It promotes discovery of data and software tools through community populated metadata catalogs and harnesses cutting edge cyberinfrastructure to provide web based processing and analysis capabilities that are scalable, extensible, and innovative. Read more in the SDSC Press Release.


Funded by NASA, OpenAltimetry is a cyberinfrastructure platform for discovery, access, and visualization of data from NASA’s ICESat and ICESat-2 missions. These laser profiling altimeters are being used to measure changes in the topography of Earth’s ice sheets, vegetation canopy structure, and clouds and aerosols. The unique data from these missions require a new paradigm for data access, to serve the needs of a diverse scientific community and to increase the accessibility and utility of these data for new users. Read more in the SDSC Press Release.

Terrestrial Water Storage Assessment

The goal of this NASA funded research project is to use cutting-edge methods and data from NASA's SESES program and NASA's Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission to produce unprecedentedly detailed terrestrial water storage estimates for the United States from 2005 to the present. The project is also building the cyberinfrastructure needed for producing these products on an ongoing basis and for delivering products and visualizations to all stakeholders in the National Climate Assessment effort.

To explore a service engagement or request further information, please visit our Industry Partners Program webpage or contact us at