The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has revealed this week that it is using public cloud services to run its newly launched web application, The National Heat Map.
Developed by the Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE), it is a publicly accessible resource providing high-resolution maps of heat demand across England.
It aims to help local authorities and community groups identify locations where heat distribution projects are most likely to make a difference, through cutting carbon emissions and reducing heating costs.
The content for the map and the core of the system is delivered entirely across one of cloud provider Memset's Miniserver VM Virtual machines, whilst the heat layer images are being stored on Memset's cloud storage solution, Memstore.
Soon after the map's launch there was a peak of nine million requests per hour, which caused a minor lag issue for the service. However, Memset's agile team wrote, tested and deployed a performance enhancement patch on the same afternoon that solved the problem.
"The National Heat Map represents a big step forward in the use of the web to provide intelligence and support for the development of local energy projects," said CSE's head of research and analysis, Joshua Thumim.
"It combines a very detailed geographic model of energy use with a range of user-friendly visualisation and reporting tools, providing sophisticated geographic information system functionality to non-technical users via a standard web-browsers," he added.
The map can be accessed at ceo.decc.gov.uk/nationalheatmap.