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Data Management at CFN

The Center for Functional Nanomaterials encourages Users to bring with them high capacity data storage drives (such as flash drives or portable hard-disk drives), which will allow them to manage their data on their own computers.  The transfer of data is conducted consistently on secondary, data-retrieval computers.

The CFN currently offers several resources for Users to manage their data:

  1. The CFN provides all onsite Users the opportunity to acquire an account on a CFN-dedicated computer server.  This data server, which is managed by BNL’s Information Technology Division (ITD), provides Users with a location to store data that was obtained at CFN, to which the Users may have access after departing CFN at the conclusion of an onsite visit.  This account remains active only for the lifetime of the User’s valid CFN Proposal and/or the User’s Guest Access to BNL.
  2. Users of CFN’s Advanced Optics Facility are provided data transfer facilitation via a DropBox account, attached to a dedicated, Advanced Optics Facility computer that is connected to the External Wireless Network at BNL.  This cloud-based data storage and management program directly distributes User data from the Advanced Optics DropBox account to the User’s DropBox account (if the User does not have an existing DropBox account, one is generated for the user during the orientation to the Advanced Optics Facility).
  3. CFN’s Theory and Computation Users gain access to their data content through remote login to its Theory and Computation Computer Cluster Facility  This allows Users to generate and to manage their data remotely on their own pace during the lifetime of their valid CFN proposal.

CFN is in the process of expanding its Data Management offerings for the User community by providing cloud-based data management and retrieval accounts for all Users.  The CFN anticipates this capability to be available to Users by the conclusion of FY2014.

Data Preservation

CFN cannot keep or maintain a User’s data indefinitely. Users are expected to retrieve all of their data at the conclusion of that User’s facility session at the CFN. The CFN provides no guarantee regarding the preservation of User’s data after completion of a single facility session at the CFN. Because of this policy, the CFN strongly encourages Users to acquire and to transfer their data to self-managed resources as soon as possible. Based on the nature of a facility’s instrumentation, the size of the acquired data, and availability of resources, some CFN facilities may keep or maintain data for a limited period after the facility session has ended. For example, CFN’s Theory and Computation Facility keeps a User’s data on CFN’s computer cluster for the lifetime of the User’s Guest Appointment, as determined by Brookhaven National Laboratory.  Once CFN’s cloud-based Data Management offering is established, all responsibility for data preservation will reside entirely with the User.