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Experimental platforms

Experimental Platforms

SED’s engineers also participate in implementing and developing experimental platforms with research teams. They provide support, coordination, and development (bids, equipment acceptance…).
* SED : cf. page Logiciels

A few examples of such platforms:

• The GenOuest bio-computing platform, functional since January 2003. This scheme is available to the entire scientific community. It offers many services: calculation, providing data and software required to analyze genomic data, test environment and testing, hosting, development activities, and technology transfer (porting and adaptation) for tools produced by bio-computing research conducted within the symbiosis EPC. Currently, more than 200 users from a broad external community have asked to open authenticated accounts on the GenOuest platform’s machines. These users launched 250,000 jobs monthly on the machines in 2011. In addition to these authenticated users, anonymous users access the resources through web portals. The GenOuest platform has been ISO9001: 2008 certified since May 2008. It is also recognized nationally as an IBiSA platform.

GRID’5000, the experimental platform for large-scale systems. The GRID’5000 initiative’s goal is constructing a major infrastructure for testing parallel and distributed systems on a large scale. Two SED engineers assisted by several engineers on fixed-term contracts are participating in the national technical team structured as a support center responsible for operating the instrument and a software development center responsible for developing software for conducting experiments on the instrument. 553 different users have used the instrument in 2011, with an average of 57 every working day.

• The IMMERSIA virtual reality platform installed in 2011. This platform is part of the European Visionair project whose goal is to create a European infrastructure to be a single point of entry – visible and attractive – for high level visualization equipment. These facilities will be accessible to a wide range of scientific communities. The Immersia platform is destined to accommodate research projects from European countries.

• The SensLab sensor networks experimental platform is a platform for large-scale protocol/application testing on a network of sensors. It contains 1024 nodes distributed over 4 sites: Grenoble, Lille, Rennes, and Strasbourg.


• The NEURINFO platform. Neurinfo is a technical platform offering imaging resources for developing and promoting methodological and technological clinical research. This platform involves human in vivo imaging and neuro-computing particularly in the context of nervous system diseases. It is open to a broad community of medical and scientific users, regionally, nationally, and internationally. Since 2009, Neurinfo has been equipped with a 3T MRI installed at the Rennes University Hospital. A team of engineers assists users in their clinical and/or methodology research projects.

• The Multimedia Indexing Platform. This platform is shared by several of the UMR’s research teams and used in many European projects. It is part of the IRISA UMR’s participation in the Image & Réseaux competitive cluster. It offers scientists the possibility of using large data volumes. Combined with the IGRIDA center’s computational cluster, the hardware platform hosts a current volume of about 157 TB.

• The three Robotic platforms:

  • A robotic vision platform comprising two robots: an Afma6 gantry robot with three gripping systems with attached cameras and a cylindrical Afma4 robot carrying a variable focus camera;

  • A mobile robotics platform including a mobile robot Pioneer 3DX of the Adept company and wheel chair electric of the company Penny and Giles Drives Technology. This two equipment is equipped with cameras and a laser rangefinder;

  • A platform of medical robotics made up by two Adept robots: Viper s650 and Viper s850 which can be coupled to an echograph 2D or 3D, or with a camera.

Service beneficiaries:

SED’s engineers perform support actions locally, nationally, and internationally. Let us illustrate these remarks by summarizing SED’s various service activities.

As previously stated, SED’s engineers provide their expertise and skills development consulting to all IJDs (Young graduate engineers) in the UMR recruited through the ADT development action campaign framework. They provide coordination/consulting for UMR researchers as well as providing national coordination. This activity is carried out through a national network called the INRIA Réseau-dev [Network-dev]. This network pools all the efforts facilitating software development and best practice dissemination (implementing multi-site development, establishing community tools, joint training courses, assessments, software purchases…).

Many services (forge, Pipol, CDash...) are available nationally, for the UMR (IRISA, LORIA) and INRIA centers (Sophia, Grenoble, Rocquencourt, Saclay, Bordeaux, Lille, Nancy). And some (e.g. "Forge"), internationally since they are accessible to the listed UMR-INRIA center research teams’ partners.

The software platforms mentioned (Visp, Polychrony, Kermetta...) are used internationally by universities, research laboratories, and industrial partners involved in research projects (ANR, European) in collaboration with the EPC. Laboratories and manufacturers may also assess the technologies offered by these platforms. Moreover, joint development actions between research projects developing a software platform and French and foreign laboratories may be implemented.

The experimental platforms (GenOuest, Grid5000, Immersia, Neurinfo, SensLab, robotic platforms) are open to external partners under collaborative projects (ANR, European). For example, the GenOuest platform has a significant regional and national presence. It establishes numerous relationships with many laboratories in the Great West and with other Biogenouest technology platforms. Nationally, GenOuest plays a structuring role by participating in the ReNaBi network (National Bio-computing Network). It has participated in various infrastructure projects launched as part of forward-looking investments: Genomics France, French Bio-computing Institute.

Additional folders: Software / Technologies