For Academia

Access

Who is entitled to an HPC account?

The HPC centre is open to all researchers in Denmark, and all academic users can benefit from the available resources under the same conditions.

Proposers for any kind of allocation schemes must hold at least the position of postdoc within their institution. PhD students request access in consultation with, and under the auspices of, their supervisor.

Access to the facility is not free. All academic users, independently of their host institution, pay the same price. This allows all Danish researchers to take advantage equally of the DeiC contribution to the national facility at SDU.

Service rates

Rates for each node type can be found here.

Users are billed according to how many node hours they could be allocated on ABACUS 2.0. This means that node hours not used by the applicant within the corresponding time frame will not be refunded.

For regular project, up to 20% of the original quota for a period will automatically be carried over to the next period, if the project has not used all available resources. Unused resources in excess of 20% of the original allocated amount will be lost.

Three major Danish universities — AAU, AU and SDU — have already committed to buy HPC resources for a total amount of 21M DKK.

  • AU has committed to buy 5M DKK over 4 years (March 2015-February 2019).
  • AAU has committed to buy 0.25M DKK resources every year over 4 years (March 2015-February 2019).
  • The Rector of SDU has set aside 15M DKK for the period 2015-2018 to (co)finance access to computational resources on the HPC facility by SDU researchers. 

How do I request an HPC account?

All researchers – except researchers affiliated with AU and AAU- need to request their HPC account online on this website.

Researchers affiliated to AU and AAU request their local HPC coordinator for access to the facility.

  • AU researchers need to contact:  Niels Carl Hansen, ncwh@phys.au.dk, tel. +45871 55401 or mobile +45 6020 2635
  • AAU researchers need to contact: Mads Boye, mb@its.aau.dk, tel. +45 9940 3453                  

Types of allocation

Academic users can request computational resources in the form of two different types of allocation: Test Projects and Regular Projects.

Test Projects 

Test Projects are those which only require a small amount of HPC resources. Typically, they are exploratory or preliminary in nature.

Test Projects can also be used for HPC access for educational purposes. Request access to ABACUS 2.0 for teaching at least one month before the start of the course.

Rules for Test Projects

  • The maximum amount is 10000 node*hours on slim nodes and 2000 node*hours on fat and GPU nodes.
  • The maximum allowed period to use the compute time is 6 months.
  • Requests can be done at any time, and they will be processed as soon as possible.

Procedure to request and grant the request

1. Submit the request form.

The request form includes the following sections:

  • A short abstract of your Test Project that if granted will be published on the SDU eScience Center website (maximum 250 ch);
  • Requested ressources.

As part of the allocated resources, access to the HPC facility storage system is provided. Requesters are asked to provide the storage requirements for their request in the form.

2. The completed request will be forwarded to the eScience Steering Committee for decision.

The eScience Steering Committee will facilitate the allocation of resources to Test Projects as much as possible to allow access of new users to the HPC infrastructure.

3. If approved, you will receive an email informing you of the resources allocated to your project.

4. You will receive a separate activation email for your HPC account.

Regular Projects

Regular Projects are those which require large amount of HPC resources, which cannot be accommodated by Test Projects. These projects are typically used by researchers or research groups with experience in HPC computing, which require continued access to HPC resources.

Rules for Regular Projects

  • This kind of allocation provide access for a period of one year.
  • Requesters are required to have a track-record of research based on the use of HPC platforms.
  • The allocation of the available resources for regular projects follows a schedule of four months’ periods, called “allocation periods”. The three yearly allocation periods are: 1st of March to 30th of June, 1st of July to 31st of October, 1st of November to last day of February.
  • Up to a 20% of the original allocated resources for a period will automatically be carried over to the next period, if the project has not used all available resources. Unused resources in excess of 20% of the original allocated amount will be lost.

Procedure to request and grant the request

1. Submit the request form.

The request form includes the following sections:

  • A short abstract of your Regular Project that if granted will be published on the SDU eScience Center website (maximum 250 ch);
  • A description of the planned activities that requires access to HPC resources and a justification of the requested resources. Must also contain a technical description of the software which will be used to carry out the project and its adequacy in relation to the requested HPC resources (maximum 4000 ch);
  • A description of the team experience in HPC environments and listing of research publications from previous HPC allocations (maximum 3000ch);
  • How many resources (compute and storage) are needed for each of the next three allocation periods.

You can submit requests continuously, but they will be gathered, evaluated and resources allocated at several cut-off dates. There are 3 cut-off dates: 1st February; 1st June; 1st October.

Requests submitted since the last cut-off and before each of these dates are reviewed together before the start of the next allocation period.

2. The completed request will be forwarded to the eScience Steering Committee for evaluation.

During the evaluation of the requests for access, the eScience Steering Committee can also use the advice of the HPC technical team at the SDU HPC facility in relation to the overall technical feasibility of the project.  Projects which cannot possibly be accommodated by the HPC installation for technical reasons will be rejected.

3. In the week preceding the start of the new allocation period you will receive an email from the HPC Coordinator informing you of the resources allocated to your project.

A consequence of the limited resources available, even high-quality projects might not be allocated resources for the current allocation period, but could be allocated for the next allocation period for these projects, if deemed appropriate by the requester, so as to ensure access without the need to resubmit a request.

4. You will receive a separate activation email for your HPC account.

The advantages of using the ABACUS 2.0 supercomputer at SDU

  • Low price: ABACUS 2.0 is a power efficient machine and thanks to the low administrative overhead, it is also a cost effective installation. Researchers in Denmark can additionally benefit from an overall ~35% discount on the total price thanks to financial support by DeiC.
  • Available now: ABACUS 2.0 is available right now, without the need to long waiting time to procure the hardware and uncertainties on the final price.
  • Scalable: In every allocation period of 4 months, researchers can buy exactly what they need. This means no need for big initial investments. DeiC is also offering pilot projects for researchers which come with full user support and are completely free of charge (see below for details).
  • Flexible: ABACUS 2.0 is a very flexible system, which can accommodate a very large range of research and technical applications. Built with 3 different kinds of computing nodes, and a very fast local and distributed storage system, you can pick the solution which better fits your needs.
  • Ownership: PIs have full control on the resources of your project running on ABACUS 2.0. Using the credentials from your own institutions, you can add and remove collaborators to your project and monitor the overall activity from your own online project area.
  • Easy: The user environment of the ABACUS 2.0 supercomputer is built around a modern modular system and can easily integrate with more specific softwares, if required by particular projects.
  • Efficient and reliable: Jobs running on ABACUS 2.0, are managed by a modern and flexible queue system, with a policy designed to offer low waiting times and a high turnaround. Interactive jobs are also possible on all of the three different kinds of computing nodes (slim, fat and GPU).

Further Information

For further information, please contact us at apply@escience.sdu.dk

Researchers from SDU should contact their local representative in the SDU eScience Steering Committee.