The Data & Analytics Facility for National Infrastructure, or DAFNI, is hosted, managed and operated by the Science & Technology Facilities Council’s scientific computing department at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Harwell, Oxfordshire.
DAFNI provides world leading infrastructure systems research capabilities to collate infrastructure data from multiple sources, map and model it, and use advanced visualisations to demonstrate and explore scenarios.
DAFNI’s development phase (2017-2021) was funded by an £8m investment from the UK Collaboratorium for Research on Infrastructure & Cities (UKCRIC).
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has now allocated a further £1.2m to the super-computer project, in what is being presented as DAFNI’s official launch.
The new investment allows DAFNI to build on its commitment to changing and sustainable infrastructure needs for major projects including the UK Centre for Greening Finance & Investment and the OpenCLIM climate impacts modelling framework.
It is expected to increase its user base across UK universities.
Jim Hall, chair of the DAFNI governance board, said: “Following four years of development, the DAFNI platform is now ready to deliver game-changing computational and data services to the community researching into infrastructure systems, allowing more complex and more detailed modelling to take place in universities across the UK, helping to inform government policy at local and national model, on areas from decisions on housing stock type and size to new road and transport links, flood defences and climate change mitigation measures.
“It allows researchers in fields such as transport, energy, population and flooding to more quickly and accurately analyse and research questions such as: how can we protect a city centre from river flooding, where should we site a new railway station, how can we better model climate and environmental impacts on our economy, society and infrastructure?”
UKRI chief executive Dame Ottoline Leyser said: “There is a continuous need for the UK to adapt to changing environments and plan for the infrastructure demands of the future. With major investment in infrastructure planned for the coming years it is crucial that we make the best possible decisions about how to meet the needs of communities across the UK. DAFNI has a major role to play by providing the high quality data and analytical tools needed to design infrastructure that works with everyone and for everyone. It is a prime example of how transformative technologies can be harnessed to support an inclusive and sustainable knowledge economy.”