Paul Clark's blog

EPCC's Advanced Computing Facility: planning for future growth

Author: Paul Clark
Posted: 1 Feb 2021 | 12:10

Since 2005, the Advanced Computing Facility (ACF) has housed all the major systems managed by EPCC. It has expanded and evolved since its creation, becoming one of the most innovative and efficient facilities of its kind in the world.

The building and its internals have changed greatly since I started in February 2018, as part of a drive to ensure that our wider master planning for the site is reflected in what visitors see. This includes a video wall using Raspberry Pis and PiWall software to allow us demonstrate HPC visualisations to visitors.

We are developing a site-wide Data Centre Infrastructure Management (DCIM) approach which allows us to view real-time data or room and system performance on screens outside of different rooms and on our video wall.

In addition, the ACF has had significant investment over the years, most recently with the creation of Computer Room 4, the home of the new Edinburgh International Data Facility (EIDF). We also host and support a number of other HPC systems at the ACF, such as the National Tier-2 system, Cirrus. The first phase of the next UK national supercomputing service, ARCHER2, has also been installed.

Building a home for the Edinburgh International Data Facility

Author: Paul Clark
Posted: 28 Nov 2019 | 09:31

Building on existing excellence, our new high resiliency room will provide the state-of-the-art computing and data storage infrastructure needed to develop the technologies that will underpin data-driven innovation.

The Edinburgh International Data Facility (EIDF) is a core component of the Data Driven Innovation (DDI) Programme that forms an integral part of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Deal investment proposition.

On the frontline of energy-efficient computing

Author: Paul Clark
Posted: 7 Jan 2019 | 15:14

The Advanced Computing Facility (ACF) on the outskirts of Edinburgh is the high performance computing data centre of EPCC.

Built in the 1970s and operated by EPCC since the turn of the millennium, the ACF site has had significant investment over the years. At present, there are three Computer Rooms, imaginatively called: Computer Room 1 (CR1), Computer Room 2 (CR2), and Computer Room 3 (CR3).

The show must go on: extreme weather at the ACF

Author: Paul Clark
Posted: 8 Mar 2018 | 10:43

On Wednesday 28th February, Edinburgh and the Central Belt of Scotland saw an unprecedented volume of snow fall in a short space of time. Around late morning that day, the Scottish Transport Minister Humza Yousaf unexpectedly upgraded the extreme weather warning from Amber to Red from 15:00 on 28th February, suggesting widespread damage, travel and power disruption, and a risk to life were likely.

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