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The MONARC Project (Models of Networked Analysis at Regional Centres) for LHC Experiments

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) experiments have envisaged Computing Models (CM) involving hundreds of physicists doing analysis at institutions around the world. CMS and ATLAS also are considering the use of Regional Centers, each of which could complement the functionality of the CERN Center. They are intended to facilitate the access to the data; with more efficient and cost-effective data delivery to the groups in each world region, using national networks of greater capacity than may be available on intercontinental links.

The LHC Models encompass a complex set of wide-area, regional and local-area networks, a heterogeneous set of compute- and data-servers, and a yet-to-be determined set of priorities for group-oriented and individuals’ demands for remote data. Distributed systems of this scope and complexity do not exist yet, although systems of a similar size to those foreseen for the LHC experiments are predicted to come into operation by around 2005 at large corporations.

In order to proceed with the planning and design of the LHC Computing Models, and to correctly dimension the capacity of the networks and the size and characteristics of Regional Centers, it is essential to conduct a systematic study of these distributed systems. This project therefore intends to simulate and study network-distributed computing architectures, data access and data management systems that are major components of the CM, and the ways in which the components interact across networks. The project will bring together the efforts and relevant expertise from the LHC experiments and LHC R&D projects, as well as from the current or near-future experiments that are already engaged in building distributed systems for computing, data access, simulation and analysis.

As a result of this study, we expect to deliver a set of tools for simulating candidate CM of the experiments, and a set of common guidelines to allow the experiments to formulate their final Models. Distributed databases are an important part of the CM to be studied. The RD45 project has developed considerable expertise in the field of Object Oriented Database Management Systems (ODBMS), and this project intends to benefit from the RD45 experience and to cooperate with RD45 as appropriate, in the specific areas where the work of the two projects (necessarily) overlap. The proposed project intends to investigate questions that are largely complementary to RD45, such as network performance and traffic prioritizing, for a variety of applications that must coexist and share the network resources.



Tufts University, Fermilab, Brookhaven National Laboratory

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