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Digital Modernization

Air Force Kessel Run Helps Expand Scale of GSA’s Cloud.gov Platform

Software development

Air Force Kessel Run Helps Expand Scale of GSA’s Cloud.gov Platform

The Air Force and the General Services Administration have partnered to expand the bandwidth of a platform-as-a-service website that the government uses to deliver services to the public.

Over the 10-day collaboration, the Air Force’s Kessel Run detachment and the General Services Administration’s Technology Transformation Services worked to allow cloud .gov to host 100 million digital users per hour.

The collaboration serves as a template for future website development projects and highlights the benefits of interagency efforts, GSA said Thursday.

Lindsay Young, acting director of cloud .gov, said that government websites are typically designed to only host thousands or tens of thousands of users every hour.

According to GSA, Kessel Run increased the scale of TTS’ shared platform, which the agency said is already designed to support spikes in usage.

Kessel Run’s Bowcaster team provided “chaos engineering” services, which, in software terms, is the introduction of artificial failure scenarios to test a network’s resilience, according to software company Dynatrace.

Bowcaster performed a variety of tests aimed at ensuring that the cloud .gov platform could reliably support high-traffic scenarios even when scaled up. 

Kessel Run is another name for Detachment 12 of the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, which specializes in rapidly delivering software products to warfighters and introducing efficiencies to the Air Force. 

Col. Brian Beachkofski, commander of Kessel Run, said that government agencies can improve their delivery of services by working together.

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