Press Release 141/2012

The Challenge of Big Data in Science

Leading Supercomputing Experts Meet at International Symposium in Karlsruhe

The amount of data increases rapidly in all scientific disciplines. Experiments, observations, and simulations produce gigantic data volumes. For scientists, these data represent new opportunities and big challenges at the same time. Leading experts worldwide will meet on September 25, 2012 at the symposium “The Challenge of Big Data in Science” at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). Representatives of the media are cordially invited and kindly asked to register using the form enclosed.

“The enormous data volumes are simply referred to as big data,” says Professor Achim Streit, Director of the Steinbuch Centre for Computing (SCC) of KIT. “Excellent research, such as the discovery of the Higgs particle this year, is no longer feasible without big data competence.” KIT among others participated with GridKa, the German computing and data center for the LHC accelerator ring of CERN. Here, about 25 petabytes, a data volume that can be stored on five million DVDs, were stored and analyzed.

Experience in handling big data is concentrated in the KIT project “Large Scale Data Management and Analysis” (LSDMA) and further developed for other scientific disciplines, such as battery research, systemic biology, and brain research. “The symposium is aimed at enhancing international exchange of information on big data. The program reflects the entire scope of this topic,” says Dr. Christopher Jung, Head of the LSDMA project.

Symposium “The Challenge of Big Data in Science“
Tuesday, September 25, 2012, 9.00 hrs,
Assembly hall of FTU on KIT Campus North,
Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany

The following persons will be among the scientists speaking at the symposium: 

Professor Alexander Szalay, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, is one of the founders of big data research and was chief data analyst of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey project for mapping the universe.

Dr. Robert Sinkovits
, San Diego Super Computing Center, will present the Gordon supercomputer that was specially developed for processing dataintensive research problems.

Professor Peter Sanders
, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Leibniz laureate and developer of novel algorithms for handling big data-bases.  

The complete program can be found at:  


Being “The Research University in the Helmholtz Association”, KIT creates and imparts knowledge for the society and the environment. It is the objective to make significant contributions to the global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility, and information. For this, about 10,000 employees cooperate in a broad range of disciplines in natural sciences, engineering sciences, economics, and the humanities and social sciences. KIT prepares its 22,800 students for responsible tasks in society, industry, and science by offering research-based study programs. Innovation efforts at KIT build a bridge between important scientific findings and their application for the benefit of society, economic prosperity, and the preservation of our natural basis of life. KIT is one of the German universities of excellence.

kes, 19.09.2012

Margarete Lehné
Chief Press Officer (acting)
Phone: +49 721 608-41105
Fax: +49 721 608-43658
presse does-not-exist.kit edu

Contact for this press release:

Kosta Schinarakis
Press Officer
Phone: +49 721 608-21165
Fax: +49 721 608-43658
E-Mail:schinarakis does-not-exist.kit edu

The press release is available as a PDF file.