Fortissimo project: digital simulation and modelling for European industry

08 October 2013

EPCC leads Fortissimo, a 3-year project focused on the development of a Cloud of HPC resources for use, in the first instance, by European manufacturing companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Fortissimo press release

FORTISSIMO – Enabling European Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the manufacturing sector to benefit from high-performance digital simulation and modelling

Today, a consortium of 45 partners announced the formation of Fortissimo: a collaborative project that will enable European SMEs to be more competitive globally through the use of simulation services running on a High Performance Computing cloud infrastructure.

The project is coordinated by the University of Edinburgh and involves partners including Manufacturing Companies, Application Developers, Domain Experts, IT Solution Providers and HPC Cloud Service Providers from 14 countries. It is funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme.

The challenge

The importance of advanced simulation to the competitiveness of both large and small companies is well established. However, the simulation of, for example, high-pressure gas cylinders or the moulding of plastics requires enormous computing power and specialized software tools and services. Generally, large companies have easier access to advanced simulation than SMEs, which are facing both technological hurdles and financial challenges. This means that SMEs are often not able to take advantage of advanced simulation, even though it would clearly make them more competitive.

The goal

The goal of Fortissimo is to overcome this impasse through the provision of simulation services and tools running on a cloud infrastructure. A “one-stop-shop” will greatly simplify access to advanced simulation, particularly to SMEs. This will make hardware, expertise, applications, visualisation and tools easily available and affordable on a pay-per-use basis. In doing this Fortissimo will create and demonstrate a viable and sustainable commercial ecosystem.

The experiments

Fortissimo will be driven by end-user requirements: approximately 50 business-relevant application experiments will serve to develop, test and demonstrate both the infrastructure and the “one-stop pay-per-use shop”. 20 experiments – all HPC-cloud-based – have already been defined in fields such as the simulation of continuous casting and die casting, environmental control and urban planning, and aerodynamic design and optimisation.

Calls for participation

Fortissimo will issue two more calls for participation in 30 experiments in the coming months: the first in November 2013 and the second in May 2014. Results from the first 20 experiments are expected for the first half of 2015.

Find out more

Fortissimo website

Blog post by Mark Parsons