World class web content solutions for leading space agency

The client, the world’s foremost aeronautics and research agency embarked on revamping their online presence. A newer portal that integrates all the latest technologies, and delivers better end user experience in terms of accessibility and connectivity was planned. Along with this, the focus remained on ensuring that this portal serves the needs of its employees as well as catering to the growing demand for real-time information from people all over the world accessing its site.

  • The Challenge

    Being a civilian agency, the client wanted an impactful way to generate public interest in their endeavors, while being prudent stewards of Federal tax dollars and assets. They needed to revamp their ‘online presence’ to serve general citizens better and manage their resources and internal communication more efficiently.

    The objective was to provide an agency-wide capability to create, maintain and manage public web sites and ancillary services. Those services would include content management and delivery, search, support for multimedia, collaborations with blogs and wikis, portals, and a platform for hosting.

    The key requirements were:

    • A single source of ‘online’ information for the public
    • Support for millions of concurrent users with 99.995 percent availability and 365x24x7 support
    • A seamless IT infrastructure for agency-wide collaboration
    • Significant reduction in complexity and operating costs in managing IT services
    • An enterprise-wide ontology for their engineering personnel
    • Better internal connectivity, and integration of learning repositories to enable efficient communication, collaboration, and knowledge sharing
    • A mobile app with full Boolean search for 150,000 images, a full-fledged radio streaming feature, and live streaming of their public TV channel
    • A Facebook-like social network for their 80,000+ employees
    • An integrated portal of disparate repositories like CMSs, databases, and file systems
    • A hybrid cloud environment to host their intranet, with compliance to security standards including FISMA High/Moderate, SAS 70, FIPS, and FedRAMP
  • The Solution

    Virtusa designed and developed the agency’s primary public web portal, and integrated the most popular social media and social networking sites into the portal. This portal involved a cached content delivery network, interventions in operations of two enterprise-scale data centers, implementation of an agency-wide CMS, and full integration of the agency’s public content. Virtusa built the platform to meet the client’s SLA requirements like support for 25,000 TPS (Transactions per Second) at the origin servers – The site will utilize a CDN; traffic at the CDN typically is 150,000 TPS for large events. 25,000 TPS flows through to the origin servers.

     

    Other requirements included:

    • 700K+ web content (pages/files in repository)
    • Varying page sizes – For instance, the client’s home page is 250 KB (Text/HTML), post-Gzip compression it is ~34 KB, associated content for the client’s home page is an additional 2900 KB
    • 15 Gbps of bandwidth on the CDN end with 3 Gbps flowing to the origin

     

    Availability requirements:

    • 99.995% SLA including any planned or unplanned downtime
    • 100 % SLA during missions which could be a 36-hour timeframe
    • Availability of content globally within 7 minutes of publication

     

    Working with limited metadata, Virtusa designed an intranet portal and a single CMS repository for more than three million assets including 500,000 webpages. For the intranet portal, Virtusa used open source platforms like Liferay and Alfresco, and commercial products such as Google Search Appliance to improve search relevance.

    The portal merged more than 10 enterprise applications for content management, forums, knowledge management, and databases. Virtusa migrated thousands of resources to the new portal, using an agency-wide taxonomy to classify assets.

    Virtusa also created an enterprise-wide community portal, Spacebook, which is based on Liferay portal technology. Content from the client’s existing intranet portal and communities were migrated to Spacebook. For robust and secure access to the agency’s applications, Virtusa implemented a security platform with centralized authentication, including secure multi-level authentication, for diverse application types.

    Virtusa planned, managed, executed, and monitored infrastructure activities for the Agency Modernization Program. The team delivered value-added, innovative enterprise technology solutions, including hardware, software, shared applications and data, and security, that was integrated into the agency’s modernized infrastructure.

  • The Benefit

    Partnering with Virtusa helped the client:

    • Improve accessibility and connectivity for the public in near real-time
    • Improve current system, updated technology and implementation of industry best practices
    • Improve agility in the adoption of tools and implementation of services
    • Enhance connectivity among engineering personnel, with their 3500+ sites accessible from a single portal
    • Implement an end-to-end knowledge management solution
    • Enable seamless collaboration and social networking among 80,000 employees across 13 centers
    • Ensure protection for more than 3000 federated applications
    • Saveover $1 million per year with the migration to a hybrid cloud
Four
Webby awards
One
Golden Montreux award
One
Civil Servant Contractor award for Best Managed Application

“Virtusa demonstrated superior depth of understanding in providing and managing world class web content solutions”

– Deputy CIO of the space agency

“Even when people are focusing on the very top of the enterprise, nothing works without all of the content that underpins everything. That’s the result of your hard work, so take a bow”

– Agency Owner

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