Large expansion of the national HPC landscape

By Cecilie Maagaard Winther , 17/03/21
DeiC national HPC Type 1 has been expanded and DeiC national HPC Type 3 has now also started.

On March 1, the national HPC landscape was significantly expanded. DeiC national HPC Type 1 was expanded to include infrastructure at Aalborg University, just as DeiC national HPC Type 3 is now also in operation.

“The target group for Type 1 is researchers who want quick access to large resources. Type 1 is easier to go to than e.g. Type 2, and should also act as a springboard for new users who are not so familiar with HPC. For them, it should just feel like another program on their computer”, says Claudio Pica, head of SDU eScience Center.

Extension of Type 1

DeiC national HPC Type 1 has actually been running since November, but only at SDU. On March 1, the plant in Aalborg was also taken into use. The difference between the two places is that in Odense primarily CPUs are run, while in Aalborg there are significantly more GPUs.

“Type 1 is, in my view, typical for the new HPC users who need something graphical and interactive. I think we will see a boom in users once we get off the ramp. It should be so flexible that you can sit and work with some things on your laptop, and then it should seem natural to move out to a Type 1 facility, where you can still work with the tools you are familiar with”, says Rasmus Jensen, team leader in CLAAUDIA at Aalborg University.

With the new infrastructure at AAU, Type 1 now also contributes to a lot of flexibility, which allows users to install their own software and use several different HPC machines in the same project so that they can work with new technologies such as machine learning and artificial intelligence.

An entrance

The advantage of Type 1 is also that there is one entrance to log in to all machines, namely through UCloud.

“I consider it a kind of service catalog that is integrated through one entry. Users get the same user experience, and they do not know whether they use the system in Odense or Aalborg”, says Rasmus Jensen.

According to Rasmus Jensen, there are already several users who are knocking on the door to get started using the systems, and they are taken in as a kind of pilot user.

With the final launch of DeiC National HPC Type 1, universities are also proving that they are more than willing to collaborate on the digital research infrastructure of the future.

Type 1 can be accessed from here:

Launch of Type 3

They were busy at SDU on March 1, because it was not just Type 1 that was expanded but also Type 3, which is operated exclusively by SDU, that was launched.

“Type 3 is very different and more reminiscent of Type 2 than any other. It is a traditional HPC that can handle jobs that require a huge amount of memory, up to 4 terabytes of RAM per node”, says Claudio Pica.

Type 3 will typically be for the experienced HPC user who needs to count on very large data sets e.g. if they have to count on large databases, which is often the case in fields such as bioinformatics, physics and quantum chemistry. 

Type 3 can be accessed from here:

More facilities on the way

Type 2, which consists of three facilities - GenomeDK at AU and Sophia and Computerome2 at DTU, has also been up and running since November. This means that now only Type 4 remains to be in operation. Type 4 is expected to be ready in late October or early November. Behind Type 2 is a consortium consisting of KU, DTU and AU.

Type 5 is the international supercomputer LUMI in Finland, and it is also not expected to be operational until the autumn.

For all systems, researchers who want access and computing time must submit an application to their local Front Office.

Read more about the different types of DeiC national HPC here.

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