QUT has recognised that (HPC) infrastructure is a critical tool to support leading edge research efforts. In recent years, QUT's computational processing requirements have been growing at the rate of 30% every six months and it was recognised that the current system would not meet demand during 2012. The SGI cluster will enable the university to continue its efforts in a number of research areas including Aviation and Airport environments, Biomedical Engineering, Smart Transport, Water and Environmental, Robotics, BioInformatics, Information Retrieval and Data Mining, Civil Engineering, Energy and Materials research. The goal of this initiative is to allow the university to sustain its distinguished track record in modelling, simulation and the analysis of critical problems faced by society.
"As a part of a longer-term plan, QUT is building a $230 million Science and Engineering Centre (SEC) which will open in 2012 and house 500 academic staff and students", stated Chris Bridge, director of Information Technology Services at QUT. "It will address crucial community infrastructure development issues lying at the intersections of greenhouse emissions, energy consumption, land use, construction technologies and materials research. The crucial building blocks underpinning the SEC research programme are mathematics, computation, simulation and e-research where increasingly complex computational challenges need to be addressed. These new developments, along with QUT's expanding research profile, were the driving force behind this HPC upgrade."
QUT is a member of the Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation (QCIF) which is a consortium of universities in Queensland. QCIF is funded by the universities and grants from the Queensland and Commonwealth Governments. It supports high performance research infrastructure for its partner universities and QCIF provided funding assistance to QUT for this acquisition.
"SGI values our long standing relationship with QUT", stated Nick Gorga, general manager, SGI Australia and New Zealand. "QUT continues to use SGI HPC systems and research data infrastructure to provide its research users with up-to-date tools to enable breakthrough research, and we are proud of our track record of providing quality support and integrated solutions that are valued and appreciated by the research community at QUT."