Danish researchers get easier access to supercomputers with new national portal
The portal provides simpler options for using different supercomputer systems in Denmark and EU.
When Danish researchers are investigating the far away galaxies and stars, optimizing sustainable constructions, or developing new medicines, they often need supercomputers to make large calculations.
Supercomputers are primarily used by specialists, but with the help of a new, common portal, Danish researchers can now more easily access the computing power of supercomputers.
Behind the initiative for the new portal is The Danish e-Infrastructure Cooperation (DeiC), which is a collaboration between Danish universities and the Ministry of Higher Education and Science, that works to ensure access to national and EU supercomputers, also called HPC services (High Performance Computing).
The new portal, called DeiC Integration Portal, has been created in a collaboration between AU, DTU and SDU - and after two years of development it has now gone live.
- The DeiC Integration Portal will make supercomputers as easy to use as AWS-, Azure- and Google cloud services. After two years of development, the consortium consisting of AU, DTU and SDU is now proud to offer this revolutionary and quite unique solution to all researchers in Denmark, says Claudio Pica, professor and director of the eScience center at SDU who coordinated the consortium for the new portal.
- With the DeiC Integration Portal we want to remove all the barriers for researchers to access powerful supercomputers in Denmark and EU.
A new entrance
The portal is a major development of the UCloud platform, which since 2020 has given Danish researchers easy access to supercomputers at SDU and AAU with a service called DeiC Interactive HPC.
With the new common portal, Danish researchers gain access to several supercomputer systems: researchers now also have access to DeiC Large Memory HPC (operated by SDU) and DeiC Throughput HPC (operated by DTU).
In addition, the portal provides access to project management tools and resource requests on LUMI, currently the largest European supercomputer located in Finland.
Kristoffer Nielbo, who is a professor and leader of the Center for Humanities Computing, Aarhus University, tested the new portal during the project's pilot phase in autumn 2022, and he is very satisfied with the result.
- A common portal brings us closer to the seamless integration of several national HPC systems. Such access simplifies my workflow and saves valuable resources that are otherwise spent on mentally – and sometimes physically – switching between platforms, says Kristoffer Nielbo.
What is a supercomputer?
- A supercomputer – or HPC, which is short for High Performance Computing – is a network of computers that are closely connected so that they complement each other's computing power.
- The special feature of UCloud is that it is an interactive cloud-based solution that focuses on easy and user-friendly access to great computing power and large data capacity.
- Supercomputers can be used for research that requires the storage of large amounts of data and the computing power to process it.
Interest from abroad
In the future, the vision is that more systems can be added to the portal, both HPC systems, but also future data management systems that are currently being developed by Danish universities in collaboration with DeiC.
The new portal has also been noticed abroad, where it has already generated interest. For example, the HALRIC consortium, which recently received 11 million euros to build collaborations between companies, hospitals, and universities, is exploring the technology for their own cloud system.
- There is no doubt that the attention the DeiC Integration Portal has received both nationally and on a European level is a recognition both of the skills and competences of the consortium's developers, and also of the DeiC board's original vision from 2020. This is certainly only the beginning of many future collaborations that will benefit the research environment in Denmark, Claudio Pica says.
If you are a researcher and interested in gaining access to the DeiC Integration Portal, you can contact your local Front Office at the educational institution.
- Danish e-Infrastructure Cooperation (DeiC) is the collaboration with and between the Danish universities and the Ministry of Higher Education and Science.
- DeiC coordinates the delivery and development of the national digital research infrastructure.
- The purpose of DeiC is to secure computing power, data storage and network infrastructure for Danish research and education
Contact Claudio Pica
Claudio Pica is professor at the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at SDU, and director of the SDU eScience Center.
Contact Johanne Lyhne Hansen
Johanne Lyhne Hansen is center administrator of SDU eScience Center at the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at SDU.