Established in 2007, Chronopolis is a digital preservation data grid framework developed by the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at UC San Diego, the UC San Diego Libraries (UCSDL), and their partners at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Colorado and the University of Maryland’s Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS).
A key goal of the Chronopolis framework is to provide cross-domain collection sharing for long-term preservation. Using existing high-speed educational and research networks and mass-scale storage infrastructure investments, the partnership is designed to leverage the data storage capabilities at SDSC, NCAR, and UMIACS to provide a preservation data grid that emphasizes heterogeneous and highly redundant data storage systems.
Specifically, the current partnership calls for each Chronopolis member to operate a grid node containing at least 100 TB of storage capacity for digital collections. For reference, just one terabyte of information would use up all the paper made from about 50,000 trees. The Chronopolis methodology employs a minimum of three geographically distributed copies of the data collections, while enabling curatorial audit reporting and access for preservation clients. The key underlying technology for managing data within Chronopolis is the Integrated Rule-Oriented Data System (iRODS), a preservation middleware software package that allows for robust management of data. The partnership is also developing best practices for the worldwide preservation community for data packaging and transmission among heterogeneous digital archive systems.
Chronopolis has concentrated on building a wide range of content that is not tied to a single community. Currently there are four significant collections housed in Chronopolis.