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Beijing Genomics Institute deploys 1 petabyte storage for DNA sequencing

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The Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI) at Shenzhen has deployed more than one petabyte (PB) of Isilon Systems' scale-out NAS to power its DNA sequencing environments. Working with one of China's leading IT integrators, United Electronics, BGI is using Isilon's X-Series, featuring its OneFS operating system, to unify more than 100 Illumina genome analysers onto a single, high-performance, highly scalable, shared pool of storage. With Isilon IQ, BGI has achieved previously unattainable levels of data performance for its research team, increasing productivity across a large array of initiatives to accelerate time-to-discovery, while reducing capital and operating expenses.

'The phrase "high performance" doesn’t even begin to describe the rigid computing and data storage demands of BGI's DNA sequencing environment, as its sheer size is beyond the capabilities of nearly all storage systems, traditional or otherwise,' said Donghui Wang, chairman, United Electronics. 'However, Isilon was up to the task. With Isilon IQ, BGI has attained unprecedented levels of both concurrent and sequential I/O performance, while saving significant man hours and capital investment, creating immeasurable value for its operations.'

BGI was founded in 1999, and has since grown to be the largest genomics research institute in Asia and the third-largest such institute in the world. Using the Isilon IQ 36000X and 72000X, BGI has unified 128 Illumina genome analysers onto a single file system, streamlining data access across its many research applications to significantly accelerate time-to-results. By consolidating its large data stores onto a central storage resource, BGI has eliminated data fragmentation and performance bottlenecks within its DNA sequencing workflow, increasing computing performance while significantly reducing storage management time and costs.