Combining three powerful open-source data-monitoring products, Elasticsearch, Logstash and Kibana, ELK stack is the leading solution for those who need to track, store, monitor and analyse data in real-time. In just three years this package has grown to become one of the most powerful tools businesses have at their disposal, and as we'll see in these case studies, its possibilities are wide and varied.

1. NASA

Perhaps no organisation is at the forefront of more pioneering technology than America's National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Its Jet Propulsion Lab uses Elasticsearch's powerful data monitoring abilities to monitor metrics captured by the Mars Curiosity rover, which roams the surface of the red planet to search for signs of life.

2. Goldman Sachs

The multinational investment banking firm incorporates ELK stack into a system that churns over a gigantic five terabytes of log data per day, which is then processed by a series of Logstash projects, indexed by Elasticsearch and analysed via a Kibana-based interface. A financial giant needs a heavy-hitting system, and ELK stack delivers.

3. The United States Geological Survey

This scientific agency run by the American Government is devoted to studying the landscape of the country. It monitors and tracks seismographic data in order to better anticipate and respond to earthquakes. And, using a system that incorporates Elasticsearch and Kibana, the agency is now able to incorporate data from Twitter into its calculations to significantly boost its response time – potentially averting catastrophic consequences.

4. McGraw Hill Education

In a fast-changing world, it's a real challenge for educational authorities to adapt and provide teaching materials that prepare children for today's realities. McGraw Hill's solution has been to create a system of learning that adapts itself to the user, indexing and recommending unlimited content from the internet in real-time, and able to serve millions of users. The service uses Elasticsearch to index, search and rank content.

5. The Guardian

The British newspaper has a successful website that reaches five million users worldwide each day. To monitor this impressive database it has employed Elasticsearch to process 40 million files a day, meaning it can carefully analyse site traffic in real-time throughout the business.