ARTiFACTS – A Blockchain Platform for Scientific & Academic Research

Business area: Scientific Research
Project type: Blockchain-based Platform
 

Business Overview

THE ARTIFACTS PLATFORM – A SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTION TO THE ACCELERATION OF SCIENCE

ARTiFACTS is a unique web-based platform, which is purpose-built to enrich the scholarly record by enabling transactions and recording existence and attribution with linkages across all research artifacts. Main functions are the management of research projects, securing the provenance of research evidence, and making hidden data accessible. The aim was to create a platform for researchers that removes barriers that delay the communication of results and gives scientists formal recognition.

Challenges

CONNECT BLOCKCHAIN AND INTERNAL DATA

The team needed to organize data structure and decide: what part to store in the blockchain, and how to connect data put on the blockchain with the data inside of the system.

  • Implement SSO (Single Sign-On) to give access to all services using one point of authentication and authorization;

  • Apply the blockchain concepts such as Proof-of-Existence and Smart Contract services;

  • Operate with an open-source platform without refactoring;

  • Process a large amount of data and integrate science graphs such as Microsoft Academic Graph with the existing system.

Solutions

PUBLIC PERMISSIONED BLOCKCHAIN IS THE BEST SOLUTION IN THE CURRENT CASE

The first version of the product was based on Ropsten (Ethereum trial network). However, after analyzing various framework options for building a private blockchain, we decided the use of Hyperledger Sawtooth will be a better solution in the current case. In this regard, we developed a data transfer strategy to move the data from Ropsten to the new private blockchain Sawtooth.

Our client’s partners didn’t have experience in using Sawtooth, which is why we created a technical manual and a set of recommendations for establishing this blockchain network.

 

  • Elaboration of specific algorithms for data identification and validation.

  • Continuous production update for business needs and optimization of internal processes.

  • Use of Grafana – an open platform for analytics and monitoring.

  • Deployment on Rancher – to manage microservices and respond rapidly to possible issues.

  • Drone, Gitlab, Slack integration – for CI/CD; Sentry, Jira integrations – for fast error detection.

  • Development of a Blockchain broker service to allow the system to be a blockchain agnostic platform.

Outcome

A UNIQUE SYSTEM THAT SPEEDS COMMUNICATION OF DISCOVERIES AND RECOGNIZES SCIENTISTS FOR THEIR CONTRIBUTIONS

Thanks to our efforts, the client got a unique system, which allows leading research projects and their researchers to secure the provenance of their materials by certifying them in the blockchain, and increasing the trust level by creating incontestable citation evidence of the (un)published papers, algorithms, data, protocols and all forms of relevant scientific outputs.

Team: 10 (Project Manager, Solution Architect, Business Analyst, 3 Python Developers, JS Developer, DevOps,  Designer, Front-End Web Developer)

Tech: React/Redux, Python (3.6, 2.7), Django 2.0.5, RabbitMQ, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, ElasticSearch, Neo4J, Rancher, Grafana, Docker