The University of Southampton

OMII-UK awarded e-Science funding until 2010

Published: 18 April 2006

A partnership of UK universities which is working to ensure the UK's international leadership in e-Science has received £5.6 million in funding.

Software development teams at the Universities of Southampton, Edinburgh, and Manchester, are developing advanced tools and components to empower new research in a wide range of disciplines as part of the UK's e-Science Core Programme. Following on from awards to Edinburgh and Manchester in September 2005, Southampton has now received £5.6 million of funding to sustain the collaboration between the partners until 2010.

OMII-UK (the Open Middleware Infrastructure Institute UK) makes Grid software --which is developed by the UK e-Science Programme and its international collaborators -- available and easy to use by e researchers in all disciplines.

Formed in October 2005 by bringing together internationally recognised e-Science expertise at the three institutions, OMII-UK provides a powerful source of well-engineered software and enables an integrated approach to the provision of higher-level and more advanced tools. The new funding enables OMII-UK to commission further development of open source e-Science software components within the community, and extends Southampton’s original funding to support OMII-UK until 2010.

‘The advanced software generated by the e-Science programme ultimately enables new research -- it lets users do things more easily, and enables some things that simply weren’t possible before,’ said Professor David De Roure, who is leading the new phase of the Southampton activity . ‘Our job is to support and sustain that software in partnership with its user community.’

OMII-UK is uniquely placed to offer an integrated set of well-engineered open source Grid middleware that incorporates a wide variety of tools and services. Today, these tools perform tasks such as job submission, data integration and semantically guided workflows using Web Services and Grid infrastructure. OMII-UK will develop more advanced tools to empower new research in a wide range of disciplines.

OMII-UK Operations are the responsibility of Director Dr Steven Newhouse, who commented: ‘We have established a robust software engineering process that integrates software from our collaborators into a distribution that is easy to install, and I am delighted to enter this exciting new phase with its focus on new users and new collaborations.’

OMII UK provides a significant basis for international collaborations and standards. Alongside the UK-centred operation, OMII-China and OMII-Europe are also driving forward the OMII concept on the international stage.

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