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OTTAWA, Ontario, June 16, 2011 – Compute Canada, the organization leading the creation of a powerful national High Performance Computing platform for academia and scientific research in Canada today announced it will partner with Super Micro Computer, Inc. to build a high-performance computing platform for its HPC for the Humanities initiative.

HPC for the Humanities is part of a distributed network of high-performance computers sharing data resources and tools among academic researchers throughout Canada. This initiative will enable humanities researchers to take advantage of the enormous potential of high performance computing to deal with large and complex sets of unstructured data in the form of books, election and financial data, archaeological information and newspapers. Researchers will be able to sort, mine, and visualize data and to ask new questions about events, the development of civilization, as well as written, audio and video materials. Supermicro’s 8-Way architecture, GPU support, mass-storage capacity and high-throughput I/O capabilities provide an excellent foundation for high computational performance and scalability.

“High performance computing in the social sciences and humanities is central to advancing creativity and innovation,” stated Chad Gaffield, President, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. “This initiative will help to support our scholars and their partners in advancing knowledge on a wide array of topics that are central to our economy and quality of life.”

“We qualified Supermicro based on their product performance/price, service quality, green power efficiency, and company history,” said Susan Baldwin, Executive Director of Compute Canada. “Supermicro’s culture of innovation and integration expertise aligns well with our charter to foster a new era in HPC evolution and to continue to provide the HPC resources needed for world-leading research. As part of Supermicro’s integrated solution we would also like to acknowledge Intel, Samsung, Toshiba and LSI for contributing to this project as well.”

Researchers will have the advantage of an HPC system based on Supermicro’s 8-Way, 5U SuperServer® (5086B-TRF) which supports 80 Cores with 8x Intel® Xeon® processor E7-8800 (10-Core) and integrates up to 2TB of Samsung DDR3 ECC reg. DIMMs. The system also includes 4.8TB of Toshiba/LSI RAID storage and expandability for up to 4 GPUs. This is an enterprise-class platform designed for mission-critical applications and high-availability.

“Developing new understanding of the human system will require the ability to efficiently analyze massive amounts of data to reach new insights,” said Raj Hazra, General Manager of High Performance Computing at Intel. “The Xeon processor E7-8800 is one of our most advanced technologies today for this kind of problem. We are excited to participate in this initiative.”

“Supermicro’s HPC SuperServers have a wide range of applications in the fields of academia and research,” said Dr. Tau Leng, GM of HPC Solutions at Super Micro Computer, Inc. “HPC for the Humanities will achieve new levels of collaboration using our high-density, scalable HPC solutions. We look forward to advancing this and future HPC initiatives with Compute Canada.”

The Supermicro equipment will be housed at SHARCNET.

SHARCNET is running its annual User Satisfaction Survey to seek feedback from the user community on all aspects of our organization and operations. Users will find the survey within the SHARCNET web portal and are encouraged to respond by July 15th. Everyone who completes the survey will be entered into a draw for an iPod Touch.

Your feedback is important to us! Results from the survey assist us in evaluating our success in meeting users’ HPC needs and help us improve our services in the future. Summary results from previous surveys are also available via the web portal.

SHARCNET is pleased to announce “SHARCFest 2011”, our annual outreach campaign of conferences, training, and sponsored events to help educate the broader community on the uses and importance of high-performance computing to research. Our premier event, SHARCNET Research Day 2011, will be held on May 19th at Sheridan College and includes two keynote talks by leading HPC researchers, Jonathan Schaeffer and Ralph Pudritz.

The anchor event for SHARCFest will be our annual HPC Summer School scheduled from May 30-June 3, also at Sheridan College. For the first time, this year’s Summer School will be jointly run by SHARCNET, SciNet and HPCVL.

For more information, please refer to the SHARCFest calendar.

Planning for our annual HPC Summer School, a week-long set of intensive courses covering a wide range of topics in High Performance Computing (MPI programming, OpenMP programming, Visualization, GPU programming, Best Practices & Debugging, and much more), is underway. This year, Summer School is being jointly run by SHARCNET, SciNet and HPCVL.

When? May 30 – June 3, 2011
Where? Sheridan College (Trafalgar Road Campus), Oakville, Ontario

Additional details and registration information coming soon.

Please join us for SHARCNET Research Day 2011, to be held on May 19th, at Sheridan College.

SHARCNET Research Day is the premier annual event at which SHARCNET professors, postdoctoral and graduate students meet to learn about each other’s HPC-related research. We are eagerly anticipating the informative presentations that will surround our theme, “HPC Innovation for Research.”

We invite you and your research group to attend and present your HPC-related work. Please visit the Research Day website to register for the event and to submit abstracts for oral presentations and posters. The event is free and lunch will be provided.

SHARCNET Research Day 2011 will feature two keynote presentations by leading HPC researchers, Dr. Jonathan Schaeffer, University of Alberta, and Dr. Ralph Pudritz, McMaster University.

There will also be several parallel tracks of contributed presentations, and a poster session with prizes for best posters in several categories.

Important Dates: (updated)

  • May 2: deadline for oral presentation abstracts
  • May 9: notification of acceptance for contributed oral presentations
  • May 9: release of final program
  • May 12: deadline for online poster abstract submission
  • May 12: online registration ends (registration is free but required)
  • May 19: SHARCNET Research Day 2011 at Sheridan College (Oakville campus)

Visit for more information. We look forward to seeing you there!

A printable poster is available for distribution.

SHARCNET is issuing a call for proposals for Round XIII of SHARCNET’s Research Support Programmes: Large Dedicated Resources (dedicated CPU time and/or storage). The deadline for submitting applications is April 30, 2011. For more information, please refer to the application guidelines.

The web-based application form is available on the SHARCNET website at: Users must have a SHARCNET webportal account in order to access this form.

Applicants may also register an “intent to apply for an award” via the SHARCNET webportal. This will add your name to a temporary mailing list; this list will be the only way in which communications (including corrections and updates) will be made about the resource allocation round after the initial email to Note that completing the “intent to register” is not a requirement for submitting an application.

A separate Research Support Programmes FAQs has been created to address common questions from previous rounds. This is available online along with the application form.

If there are any questions or clarification required, please do not hesitate to contact SHARCNET at

HPCS 2011, Canada’s pre-eminent forum for HPC, is now open for registration and abstract submission.

This summer, the 25th annual High Performance Computing Symposium will take place in Montreal, from June 15 to 17. HPCS is a multi-disciplinary conference that focuses on research involving High Performance Computing and its application in Canada. It is attended by Canadian and international experts and renowned researchers in the computer sciences, all areas of engineering, applied and pure sciences, medicine and life sciences, mathematics, the humanities and social sciences.

This year, building on Montreal’s strength in medical research, the main theme of the conference will be Supercomputing in Medical Science, exposing the growing importance of high performance computing for this field of research.

The conference special events include an opening cocktail in the Gora Gallery of Contemporary Arts and a visit to the IBM assembly plant in Bromont. Tutorials will be held on June 13 and 14; complete information will be available soon on the web site at

Do not hesitate to contact the local organizing committee should you have any questions or suggestions regarding this event.

SHARCNET, along with Compute Canada and the other Ontario HPC consortia, SciNet and HPCVL, have partnered to be sponsors of ORION’s national Summit in Toronto, April 18 and 19, 2011.

A session devoted to HPC will be held on Tuesday afternoon, designed to showcase the innovation enabled by HPC and its importance to research, entitled “Supercomputing & Advanced Networks: The Roads and Cities of the 21st Century.” Learn more about HPC and its capabilities for research in Ontario, Canada and beyond, from climate modeling, to advanced visualization in medical research, to solving the cosmic mysteries.

Join distinguished Canadian and global leaders and innovators in science, research, education and information technology to discuss and showcase new and innovative technologies that are transforming the way we conduct research, collaborate, teach and learn.

For more information, or to view video streams of the keynote and breakout sessions, visit: