Press Releases

SHARCNET is pleased to announce the results of its Round IV Dedicated Programming Support competition. See award details for more information.

Congratulations to all the awardees!

HPCS (the High Performance Computing Symposium) is Canada’s foremost supercomputing conference – a multidisciplinary conference where computational researchers from all disciplines in industry and academia, computer scientists, and vendors exchange new tools, techniques and interesting results in and for HPC computational research.

HPCS 2013 will take place in Ottawa from June 2 – 6, 2013. The first two days (Sunday and Monday) will consist of tutorial workshops covering introductory and advanced tools for high performance computing, and the technical sessions of the symposium will take place Tuesday through Thursday. Information will be posted and updated at the HPCS 2013 website.

We are seeking submissions for both contributed works and workshops, particularly as relating to our theme, “Big Data + Big Compute = Big Insight”. We are particularly interested in policy-relevant work at the intersection of HPC and Big Data across all sectors:

  • Society (including topics such as medicine, privacy, and the power grid, etc.)
  • Industry (including such topics such as data mining, oil and gas, and business analytics, etc.)
  • Government (including such topics as traffic modelling, data mining for internal, etc.)
  • Academia (ranging from the physical sciences to digital humanities)

Submissions for contributed works will be due on April 2, 2013. There will be two streams for submissions – full-paper works and abstracts. Submissions will be refereed and notifications of acceptance will go out by May 3, 2013. Proceedings will be published in a refereed, indexed venue. Submission information will be posted here.

Submissions for half-day or full-day tutorial workshop proposals will be due Feb 4, 2013, and should include an outline of the proposed curriculum, list of instructors, and what facilities would be required. Workshops with a strong hands-on component and connection to the themes of the conference are strongly preferred.

The 27th annual High Performance Computing Symposium (HPCS), Canada’s foremost supercomputing conference, will take place on June 2 – 6, 2013 in Ottawa, Ontario.

HPCS 2013 – Advanced Research Computing: Across Disciplines, Across Canada recently launched its website and information about the technical program is expected to be posted in the next few weeks. Interested delegates may also sign up for email updates here.

HPCS is a multidisciplinary conference where computational researchers from all disciplines in industry and academia, computer scientists, and vendors exchange new tools, techniques and interesting results in and for HPC computational research. More information about the conference series in general is available at

SHARCNET is issuing a call for Letters of Intent for Round IV of SHARCNET’s Research Support Programmes: Dedicated Programming Support. This programme provides support for computational projects of exceptional potential that will have lasting impact and value and that require significant support from SHARCNET to proceed. For Round IV, applications are encouraged that satisfy the programme objectives and priority will be given to proposals that:

  • Propose to make novel, effective and large-scale use of non-standard architectures especially GP-GPU.
  • Propose to develop innovative visualization applications and techniques that emphasize the visualization of large datasets especially using distributed/parallel visualization/rendering techniques.
  • Propose a programme of work that will enable innovative projects from disciplines that are traditionally not major users of HPC.
  • Are from established HPC disciplines and that propose to develop and introduce new packages, techniques or algorithms that are substantially different than those extant in the field. Applications that propose to scale to very large numbers of processors are encouraged.

The deadline for Round IV LOI’s is October 5, 2012, and selected applications will be invited to submit a full proposal by November 30, 2012.

Please refer to the application guidelines for more information about this programme.

Principal Investigators (PIs) at Canadian academic institutions who require access to High Performance Computing (HPC) resources on Compute Canada systems are hereby invited to submit proposals requesting allocations of CPU time and storage on Compute Canada systems. Allocations will be valid for one year, beginning January 2013. This call for proposals is aimed at PIs who require greater than the default usage level on any system. PIs who are not sure if their request requires a RAC allocation should contact prior to submitting a request. Any individual who is eligible to apply to national granting councils for funding is eligible to apply for an allocation. Proposals must be submitted electronically via the CCDB to Compute Canada on or before October 11, 2012 at 3pm (Eastern). Please note the online form for this year’s application has changed from last year.

Please login and review the form well in advance of the submission date. A proposal is not required in order to get access to Compute Canada systems. Any Canadian academic researcher may obtain the “default usage level” on any Compute Canada system at any time by registering with the CCDB and then requesting accounts at one or more consortia. To read the complete Call For Proposals, please click here.

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 a 32GB Pico USB flash drive.

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 thrilled to be part of the Science Studio platform, by providing HPC support and hosting services, to enable researchers to remotely control and run experiments at the Canadian Light Source (CLS).

Led by Principal Investigator, Dr. Michael Bauer, who is also the Associate Director, SHARCNET, this CANARIE-funded project gets a boost through a demonstration by Governor General David Johnston in Brazil. See the full CANARIE press release for details.

Western University announced the formation of a new Ontario-based multi-million dollar research and development computing network today with its partners, the Governments of Canada and Ontario, IBM (NYSE: IBM) and the University of Toronto.

One of the primary nodes for the newly formed Southern Ontario Smart Computing and Innovation Platform (SOSCIP) is Western’s Shared Hierarchical Academic Research Computing NETwork (SHARCNET). A part of Compute Canada, SHARCNET is a high performance computing consortium delivering game-changing research and innovation to the world.

The computing infrastructure of Western, IBM and its university partners -- with a combined expertise in high performance and cloud computing -- will form a research platform unlike any other in Canada.

High performance computing refers to the use of supercomputers and computer clusters to solve advanced computational problems while cloud computing is the delivery of computing services via shared resources, software, and information over a network.

“One of the things this contribution from IBM gives Western is a tremendous start in addressing some very substantial problems in regards to dealing with large-scale data,” says Western computer sciences professor Michael Bauer, who also serves as SHARCNET’s Associate Director. “In many, many circumstances, data will become the core problem of the next decade, not in terms of generating data but in terms of what do you do with it and how do you actually glean useful information from it.”

Bauer adds Western will not only have a system with which researchers and computer scientists can begin to examine this core problem but will also receive significant software contributions from IBM, which are necessary to extract this kind of information on a large-scale.

“Western played a leading role in establishing SHARCNET, Canada’s largest high-performance computing consortium, and we are excited to take the next step by using cloud computing to manage the staggering volume of digital data society creates on a daily basis,” says Western President Amit Chakma. “From neuroscience to our environment and industrial applications, supercomputing holds tremendous promise for helping us make complex research decisions more quickly, while mining data for better answers.”

Western’s new IBM-fueled computing system will provide excellent opportunities for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to explore the applicability of cloud computing and to address many of their computational problems.

“For the financial industry, cloud technology is ideal for solving complex latency sensitive problems on large streaming data sets in real time,” says Ben Bittrolff, Chief Financial Officer at London-based Cyborg Trading Systems. “Western joining forces with IBM on this major initiative is excellent news for all businesses, no matter the size, in Ontario, across Canada and undoubtedly around the world.” More info