2021-…: An Open Federated Architecture for the Laboratory of the Future

October 30th, 2021

Autonomous experiments, “self-driving” laboratories and smart manufacturing employ machine-in-the-loop intelligence for decision-making. Certain traditional human-in-the-loop activities in experimental science are replaced by an autonomous online control that collects experiment data, analyzes it, and takes appropriate operational actions in real time to steer an ongoing or plan the next experiment. US Department of Energy (DOE) laboratories are currently in the process of developing and deploying federated hardware/software architectures for connecting instruments with edge and center computing and data resources to autonomously collect, transfer, store, process, curate, and archive scientific data.

This project creates an open federated instrument-to-edge-to-center scientific ecosystem hardware/software architecture for the laboratory of the future using a novel system-of-systems (SoS) and microservice architecture approach. It connects scientific instruments, robot-controlled laboratories and edge/center computing/data resources to enable autonomous experiments, “self-driving” laboratories, smart manufacturing, and AI-driven design, discovery and evaluation.

This research and development effort describes science use cases as design patterns that identify and abstract the involved hardware/software components and their interactions in terms of control, work and data flow. It creates an SoS architecture of the federated hardware/software ecosystem that clarifies terms, architectural elements, the interactions between them and compliance. It further designs a federated microservice architecture, mapping science use case design patterns to the SoS architecture with loosely coupled microservices, standardized interfaces and multi programming language support.

The primary deliverable of this project is a Self-Driven Experiments for Science/Interconnected Science Ecosystem (INTERSECT) Open Architecture Specification, containing the use case design pattern catalog, the federated SoS architecture specification and the federated microservice architecture specification.

Funding Sources

Participating Institutions

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