AWS Public Sector Blog

Category: Research

frozen river with waterfall in woods

Addressing environmental challenges with the AWS Cloud

Azavea believes in the power of geospatial technology to improve communities and the planet. Azavea has been exploring the power of this technology to help their clients to answer complex questions in a wide range of domains from urban ecosystems, infrastructure planning, and economic development to water, energy, and climate change. As part of the Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative (ASDI), we invited Jessica Cahail, product manager at Azavea, to share how her organization is using AWS and open data to develop tools that help users address environmental challenges and deliver knowledge to support decision making.

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The Water Institute of the Gulf runs compute-heavy storm surge and wave simulations on AWS

The Water Institute of the Gulf runs its storm surge and wave analysis models on Amazon Web Services (AWS)—a task that sometimes requires large bursts of compute power. These models are critical in forecasting hurricane storm surge event (like Hurricane Laura in August 2020), evaluating flood risk for the Louisiana and other coastal states, helping governments prepare for future conditions, and managing the coast proactively.

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coronavirus

Taking COVID in STRIDES: The National Center for Biotechnology Information makes coronavirus genomic data available on AWS

AWS and the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) announced the creation of the Coronavirus Genome Sequence Dataset to support COVID-19 research. The dataset is hosted by the AWS Open Data Sponsorship Program and accessible on the Registry of Open Data on AWS, providing researchers quick and easy access to coronavirus sequence data at no cost for use in their COVID-19 research.

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Ocean skyline

Improving our knowledge about the oceans by providing cloud-based access to large datasets

As a physical oceanographer focused on remote sensing, Dr. Chelle Gentemann, senior scientist at Farallon Institute, has worked for over 20 years on retrievals of ocean temperature from space. She uses measurements of sea surface temperature from satellites to understand how the ocean impacts our lives. Chelle’s work requires analysis of large volumes of data, which requires access to large data storage and computational resources. Although most large research institutions can secure those IT resources, that is not the case for smaller organizations or underserved communities around the world. As part of the Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative, we invited Dr. Gentemann to share her perspective on the value of hosting high-resolution climate data on AWS.

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DNA Genotyping and Sequencing. A bioinformatician analyzes DNA integration data

Five things to consider when moving your research workflows to AWS

Research is done differently in the cloud than in an on-premises lab. Research labs looking to move computational research to the cloud should start with their workflows. There are common themes across computational research workflows that researchers should consider as they begin to move their research workflows to AWS.

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city traffic with train overpass

Enabling rapid COVID-19 and air pollution analysis across the globe with OpenAQ and AWS

Unravelling the relationship between COVID-19 and air pollution is vital for protecting public health. For example, preliminary works suggest that those living in environments with polluted air are significantly more likely to be adversely affected by COVID-19. At the same time, air pollution is already known to cause an estimated one out of every eight deaths globally. The decrease in human activities due to COVID-19 lockdowns across the world has people wondering how air pollution levels are being impacted—and what valuable public health and policy lessons we can learn.

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Flooding in Venice, Italy. Photo courtesy Jonathan Ford

Communicating a national flood risk assessment using AWS

The First Street Foundation is dedicated to communicating the flood and inundation risks posed by a changing environment, with an emphasis on allowing Americans to discover and understand those risks. By building awareness, our hope is that every individual is empowered to take steps to reduce their risk exposure to flooding, as well as that of their communities—today and in the future. First Street created a nationwide assessment of flood risk for the CONUS and DC, and is now sharing that assessment through Flood Factor™.

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genomic makeup data

Stanford researchers accelerate autism research by sharing genomic data in the cloud

In 2014, the Wall Lab at Stanford University sought to answer one of the most pressing questions in neuroscience: What genes influence autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), this neurodevelopmental disorder affects roughly one in 54 children in America and is on the rise—nearly tripling since 1992. In the lab’s study of ASD genetics, they chose the cloud—and a unique experimental approach—to speed the time to science.

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Burned hill at Big Sur

How artificial intelligence helps monitor forest dryness

Forest wildfire risk is increasing in the western United States. In the past five decades, large wildfire frequency and the area destroyed have risen by more than four and six times, respectively. The increased risk posed by wildfires has prompted scientists to try to assess wildfire risk to help inform whether to move people to safety before disastrous wildfires occur.

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