Part of Horizon 2020 HPC programme cancelled in favour of EuroHPC

4 Sep 2018 Luxembourg - The Horizon 2020 calls related to HPC will be cancelled from the 2019-2020 workprogramme. The related budget will be transferred to the new EuroHPC JU. This was announced by Thomas Skordas, European Commission director "Digital Excellence and Science Infrastructure" in a blog post. In practice, this means that all the Horizon 2020 HPC calls in FET, e-infrastructure and LEIT-ICT will disappear from these work programmes this Autumn. There will be a new work programme for the EuroHPC JU designed with the about 1 billion euro of the H2020 money and matching funds from EuroHPC partner states with an additional 420 million from private partners.

Skordas expects that the EuroHPC JU work programme for 2019-2020 will be published in late 2018. It will include activities for approximately 1 billion euro of public funding addressing both of the JU's pillars:

  • Infrastructure pillar: the plan is to launch calls for expression of interest in December 2018 for the acquisition of two pre-exascale and at least two petascale supercomputers by the end of 2020. These calls will take into account the requirements of European HPC users. Submitted expressions of interest will be evaluated with the help of external experts, and in Spring 2019 the Governing Board will use them to select the winning hosting entity/consortium and then plan the next phase: calls for tenders for procuring the supercomputers. Currently, working groups on user requirements and on hosting and procurement are finalising the details.
  • R&I pillar: the plan here is to define the work programme of the JU by this Autumn and launch its first calls for proposals early 2019.

Skordas explained that this work programme will include largely similar activities and topics to those covered by the HPC calls under the Horizon 2020 work programmes for 2019-2020 that are due to be cancelled. For example, he thinks that it will include actions across the full spectrum of the HPC ecosystem, such as continuing the development of the European microprocessor and European exascale systems and of exascale software and applications, and co-designing their integration in extreme scale prototypes; and contributing to the creation of national HPC Competence Centres and to their networking and coordination across the EU for stimulating the wider use of HPC and addressing the specific HPC-related skills gap.

Skordas invites all interested parties to contribute to the discussion and definition of the R&I pillar of the JU work programme, notably through the two Private Associations, ETP4HPC and BDVA, that are currently coordinating the stakeholders and preparing the inputs defining their priorities. These will be used by the Governing Board to define and adopt the JU work programme and its budget.

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