CERN is the world’s largest particle physics laboratory and home of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world’s most powerful accelerator providing research facilities for High Energy Physics researchers across the globe. In the first run of the accelerator, resulting in the Nobel prize-winning discovery of the Higgs boson, the LHC experiments generated up to 27 PB of data per year, a rate which has increased to over 50PB in 2016.

In processing and analysing this data the experiments run more than 2 million jobs per day on the global distributed computing infrastructure federating around 170 computer centres worldwide. This is the Worldwide LHC Computing Grid (WLCG) project which is led by CERN, and provides the resources to store, distribute, analyse, and access in close to real-time, LHC data for a global community of more than 10,000 physicists.

CERN has acquired over decades a thorough experience in the design, development and operation of very large-scale storage infrastructures. This includes mass storage systems such as CASTOR and EOS, which are used for the storage, processing and long-term archiving of over hundred Petabytes of scientific data using tape and disk. CERN has also engineered the main data movement service, FTS, used for moving hundreds of million files worldwide across the WLCG infrastructure.