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Modern scientific data mainly consist of huge datasets gathered by a very large number of techniques and stored in much diversified and often incompatible data repositories. More in general, in the e-science environment, it is considered as a critical and urgent requirement to integrate services across distributed, heterogeneous, dynamic "Virtual organizations" formed by different resources within a single enterprise. In the last decade, Astronomy has become an immensely data rich field due to the evolution of detectors (plates to digital to mosaics), telescopes and space instruments. The Virtual Observatory approach consists into the federation under common standards of all astronomical archives available worldwide, as well as data analysis, data mining and data exploration applications.
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