The Datagrid network aims to connect European scientific institutions to enable data transfer at speeds of up to 2.5Gbytes/sec, many times faster than the Internet. The model of universal access it is aspiring to emulates the National Grid for electricity, and would enable users to access an almost unlimited resource of computing power.
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The project is being spearheaded by a number of organisations including the UK's Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC).
The first application for the nascent DataGrid will be the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) experiment, designed to explore the creation of the universe. The experiment will generate a petabyte (one million Gbytes) of data per second.