Participation in the worldwide research project folding@home:Telefónica Deutschland uses computing capacities to combat the coronavirus
In the fight against the coronavirus, Telefónica Deutschland is supporting an international research association to develop therapies and vaccinations. The telecommunications provider is providing a data centre for the volunteer computing project folding@home. "As a network operator, we have a great deal of computing power, some of which we are now putting at the service of the worldwide fight against the coronavirus," says Jochen Bockfeld, Director Core & Services at Telefónica Deutschland. "The virus poses completely new challenges for the entire world, companies and us as individuals. Technology creates concrete and meaningful added value here - from digital connectivity in everyday life to the use in research. We are therefore using our technological know-how and resources to support society in these difficult times".
Virtual computers in the Hamburg data center contribute to the fight against corona
To support the folding@home project, Telefónica Deutschland is providing a virtual data centre in the heart of Hamburg as a first step, which has around 40 high-performance servers with around 1,400 computing cores. For its nationwide network operation, the telecommunications provider is using several high-performance data centres distributed throughout Germany. On the way to the mobile network of the future, the Hamburg data center is being equipped with a new infrastructure for future virtualization measures and can therefore currently be utilized for other purposes. The modern computer servers now work almost around the clock on behalf of the corona project. To calculate the computer simulations, the technology experts at Telefónica Deutschland have created a private cloud computing infrastructure to divide the higher-level computing power of the high-performance servers into numerous virtual computing machines. These de facto imitate several small, high-performance servers that calculate individual tasks.
Global Telefónica Group supports project with 107 servers
The measure is part of the worldwide support of the Telefónica Group, which is participating in the project with its subsidiaries in Germany, Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil and the United Kingdom. As a result of the joint action, Telefónica can provide a total of 107 high-performance servers with 3,552 computing cores for the fight against the coronavirus. With this and many other measures, the company is showing that it is taking responsibility for society and its customers in these challenging times.
Research project analyses structure of viral proteins via distributed computing power
The world-renowned folding@home project is a research network that uses distributed computing power to analyse the structure of viral proteins - in this case with a focus on the protein structure of the coronavirus. The aim of the project is to use computer simulations to develop the most effective design for therapies against the virus. To this end, the project breaks down extensive computing and analysis tasks into small parts and has them calculated using various computers and data centres. The results are then combined centrally. The project relies on users around the world providing their computer resources to successfully calculate the tasks. Hundreds of thousands of users are creating de facto a huge, worldwide supercomputer within the project. Folding@home has been analyzing the coronavirus since the end of February 2020 - also with the help of countless private users and companies in Germany. "I think it is great that Telefónica Deutschland is contributing its computing power to our project in the fight against the coronavirus," says Anton Thynell, Head of Communications & Collaborations at folding@home. "Together we are stronger. Because any interested user who has unused resources available on his or her PC can participate in our project. To be part of the cure, they can simply download our software under foldingathome.org."