March 30, 2020 — UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has awarded contracts to run elements of the next national supercomputer, ARCHER2, which will represent a significant step forward in capability for the UK’s science community. EPCC has been awarded contracts to run the Service Provision (SP) and Computational Science and Engineering (CSE) services for the next national supercomputer, ARCHER2, following a procurement exercise delivered by UKRI.The £79 million (~$98 million) service will be among the fastest fully general purpose (CPU only) systems in the world when it comes into service and will be housed at the University of Edinburgh’s Advanced Computing Facility.

The project is being delivered and supported by UKRI’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

Service Provision provides vital system maintenance and upgrades when they are required, it is also the access point for users to the ARCHER2 system. Computational Science and Engineering provides support to users with their individual projects as well as ongoing help, software support and development. These are both integral parts of the full service.

Dr James Hetherington, UKRI Director of Digital Research Infrastructure, said: “The award of the contracts to provide these crucial services is a major milestone in commissioning the ARCHER2 service, and providing a step-change in capability for the UK’s digital research community. The people and skills that make advanced computational science possible are one of the most important parts of our computational science infrastructure.

“The skilled individuals supported by this award will enable the UK to use the supercomputer to its full potential. They will provide a range of services, from the complex engineering tasks needed to keep a supercomputer running to advanced scientific programming, co-developing simulation codes with users. UKRI is delighted to continue its long-standing relationship with the team in Edinburgh, one of the UK’s leading centres of excellence in high performance computing.”

Professor Mark Parsons, EPCC Director, said: “EPCC is very proud to have been selected as the SP and CSE provider. It’s the users who make a service successful and we look forward to supporting all of them on the new ARCHER2 system.”

EPCC have also developed the ARCHER2 website, which has now gone live.

About the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is the main funding body for engineering and physical sciences research in the UK. By investing in research and postgraduate training, we are building the knowledge and skills base needed to address the scientific and technological challenges facing the nation. EPSRC is part of UK Research and Innovation, a new body which works in partnership with universities, research organizations, businesses, charities, and government to create the best possible environment for research and innovation to flourish. We aim to maximize the contribution of each of our component parts, working individually and collectively. We work with our many partners to benefit everyone through knowledge, talent and ideas. For more information visit UK Research and Innovation. For more information about what we do, our priorities and how we implement our strategy, please read through our Strategy and Delivery Plan section.

Source: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)