Energy agency builds its own social network

The Energy Department’s National Nuclear Security Administration is utilizing cloud-based social networking tools to allow the NNSA’s workforce to collaborate and work from any device, at any time.

OneVoice is an immersive collaboration and social network that includes Web and desktop video conferencing, instant messaging, voice and e-mail from one unified client, powered by YOURCloud, a secure, hybrid community cloud, according to Anil Karmel, chief technology officer for NNSA and Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).

“The fact of the matter is we are a very mobile workforce and we need to be in a place where work becomes something you do and not a place you go,” Karmel said. Enterprise mobility is key for the government, he noted. “We are not about building new office buildings, but about being able to work where it makes sense.”

Karmel spoke June 6 at the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Cloud Computing Forum and Workshop V at the Commerce Department, presenting an example of a cloud use case within the government.

YOURcloud is a virtual server and desktop hosting environment, built on infrastructure-on-demand capabilities. Created at LANL, the cloud broker platform takes server automation to the next level by allowing researchers or scientists to log on and provision a virtual server in 30 minutes as opposed to 30 days, Karmel said.

The cloud platform was created as a collaboration between industry and government, with each contributing technology that was fused together to deliver capabilities to meet the needs of NNSA’s constituents.

“All services maintain our existing management security boundaries within secure enterprise enclaves that are owned and managed by the requestor,” Karmel said. “We leverage a common compute platform, yet have these secure enterprise enclaves” owned or controlled by the users.

The infrastructure-on-demand platform consists of the broker, portal, service catalog and secure enclaves, based on a user’s respective use case. It is also a bridge between the on-premise environment and commercial cloud providers. YOURCloud is a secure, hybrid community cloud in the sense that the Energy Department has national plans with individual mission needs and concerns and serves the needs of Energy’s National Labs, Karmel said.

About the Author

Rutrell Yasin is is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

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