PRACE 19th Call for Proposals Pilots Improved Industry Access Track

On recommendation of its Industrial Advisory Committee (IAC), PRACE will include in its 19th Call for Proposals for Project Access a pilot to increase the industrial uptake of Tier-0 High Performance Computing (HPC). The Call will allocate up to 10% of the offered resources to industrial projects, which will be evaluated separately from and before academic submissions to the same Call.

PRACE opened its Calls for Proposals for Project Access to industrial Open R&D in 2012. While evaluating the industrial uptake of HPC through the calls since then, the IAC concluded that the main barrier that needs overcoming is the difficulty industry has competing with academia when proposals are ranked according to scientific excellence.

To address this, PRACE will pilot an improved track for industrial Open R&D access to Tier-0 resources. The pilot, run within the 19th PRACE Call for Proposals for Project Access, will allocate up to 10% of the resources offered in the Call to this industry track.

By doubling the percentage of resources offered compared to the uptake so far and by adapting our Tier-0 Project Access to make it more fair to industry-supported proposals, we hope to give an incentive to potential industrial applicants,” said Serge Bogaerts, Managing Director of PRACE.

Applicants selecting this track are expected to submit proposals that will lead to industry-relevant technological advances and will provide significant increases in competitiveness for their sector.

The industrial proposals will be evaluated against the same scientific excellence and technical feasibility criteria as academic proposals. The pilot will rank them against other industrial proposals instead of against academic projects. The current conditions for eligibility of industrial proposals will not change: applicants have to commit to publishing the results by the end of the grant period, and companies involved in the proposal have to have their headquarters or substantial R&D activity in Europe. Access remains free of charge, and companies are invited to team up with academic partner(s).

PRACE also encourages industrial applicants to rely on PRACE Preparatory Access to benchmark their code(s) and evaluate and demonstrate the technical feasibility of their proposal on a Tier-0 HPC system. These lightweight access tracks enable future applicants, including those from industry, to get fast access to the target Tier-0 system(s) with a small amount of resources adapted to the purpose of testing the code(s): http://www.prace-ri.eu/prace-preparatory-access/

PRACE Access offers great potential benefits to industrial use of HPC, but companies have not been in a position to reap these benefits, as their proposals were ‘outcompeted’ by academic projects,” said Dr Lee Margetts, Chair of the IAC, “I am confident that this pilot will remove a significant barrier to industrial uptake of HPC, and am looking forward to evaluating the results after the closing of Call 19,” he added.

The 19th PRACE Call for Proposals is expected to open on 5 March 2019: www.prace-ri.eu/prace-project-access/

About PRACE

The Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe (PRACE) is an international non-profit association with its seat in Brussels. The PRACE Research Infrastructure provides a persistent world-class high performance computing service for scientists and researchers from academia and industry in Europe. The computer systems and their operations accessible through PRACE are provided by 5 PRACE members (BSC representing Spain, CINECA representing Italy, ETH Zurich/CSCS representing Switzerland, GCS representing Germany and GENCI representing France). The Implementation Phase of PRACE receives funding from the EU’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme (2014-2020) under grant agreement 730913.

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