Loughborough University partnered with the University of Leicester to create HPC Midlands. The initiative was supported with GBP 1 million of seed funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), which oversees research and training in these areas across the UK. HPC Midlands is part of a growing number of national e-Infrastructure services available to industry, accessed over the world leading JANET network at speeds of up to 100 Gigabits per second.
The cornerstone of HPC Midlands is a brand new state of the art Linux powered supercomputer known as Hera. Hera has 3,008 Intel processor cores, 15TB of RAM and 120TB of storage. The system is pre-loaded with a wide range of commercial and open source software, including packages from leading ISVs such as ANSYS and CD-adapco which are available under flexible licensing terms for short term use. Hera was procured from Bull Information Systems, who also operate the supercomputer under contract to Loughborough University.
HPC Midlands Centre Manager Martin Hamilton noted: "Supercomputing was a natural consequence of many years' working with industry in Computer Aided Design and Engineering. It is very pleasing to receive this national recognition for our hard work and success in engaging industry across a range of sectors and helping them use e-infrastructure to improve their business. I must also extend my thanks both to Bull and our growing network of industrial collaborators around HPC - both the established firms and the up and coming start-ups and spin-outs that will be tomorrow's household names."
Bull UK and Ireland CEO Andrew Carr stated: "Bull prides itself on flexible and pragmatic service delivery. In recognition of our customers' growing need for specialist supercomputing expertise and the national shortage of these skills, we have been building up an expert team of leading HPC professionals who now manage a large number of private cloud HPC systems across the UK for a wide range of customers. We are also delighted to be addressing the broader skills agenda with the HPC Midlands team, and looking at ways we can work together to bridge a gap that needs closing to continue the UK's development in this industry."