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News Release

HPC Midlands and Bull lead the way in making Supercomputing accessible to industry
Released: 25th September 2013
Publisher: Bull

The cutting edge work delivered by HPC Midlands and Bull Information Systems has been given another plaudit this week with the innovative supercomputing centre of excellence shortlisted for the prestigious Times Higher Education award for Outstanding Contribution to Innovation and Technology.  The award recognises breakthroughs in the University sector that have a direct impact on the UK economy. 

Loughborough University partnered with the University of Leicester to create HPC Midlands.  The initiative was supported with £1m 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 that “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 spinouts that will be tomorrow’s household names.”

Bull UK and Ireland CEO Andrew Carr said that “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.”

About Loughborough University
Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines. It is a member of the 1994 Group of 11 leading research-intensive universities. The Group was established in 1994 to promote excellence in university research and teaching. Each member undertakes diverse and high-quality research, while ensuring excellent levels of teaching and student experience.

About HPC Midlands
HPC Midlands is a £1m EPSRC-funded project which builds on the high performance computing expertise at Loughborough University and the University of Leicester. HPC Midlands provides supercomputing on demand, with flexible licensing for commercial software. High performance computing enables the processing of immense quantities of data to solve advanced computation problems across all sectors. Undertaking highly calculation-intensive tasks, high performance computing can be used to: 

  • Conduct simulations and modelling of complex processes
  • Develop and redesign products
  • Enhance production and delivery processes
  • Perform consumer trend monitoring, searching or profiling

HPC Midlands has the infrastructure and expert team to drive innovation in research and industry.

For more information on HPC Midlands, please contact Peter Strutton on 01509 223110 or kt@lboro.ac.uk.  Further information and case studies are available from the HPC Midlands website at http://hpc-midlands.ac.uk.

About Bull, Architect of an Open World
Bull is an Information Technology company, dedicated to helping corporations and public sector organisations optimise the architecture, operations and the financial return of their information systems and their mission-critical related businesses. Bull focuses on open and secure systems, and as such is the only European-based company offering expertise in all the key elements of the IT value chain. For more information visit: http://www.bull.co.uk or follow on Twitter @Bull_UK


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