High Performance Computing (HPC), also known as Research Computing or Scientific Computing, is for large-scale computing tasks that require sorting through a huge amount of data, solving a difficult numerical problem, or repeating the same calculation multiple times for different situations – all tasks that even the fastest desktop computer could not manage.
What is a High Performance Computing System?
An HPC system is a large number of desktop computer chips that are linked together through a special high-speed interconnect network, and are used for parallel processing and for running advanced visualization and scientific applications efficiently, securely, reliably, and quickly. University researchers can break their compute job into pieces, distribute the pieces across many nodes on the cluster, and accumulate the results.
University Support of HPC
The University's HPC system includes large-scale flexible and extensible research data storage, shared software licenses and applications, collaboration resources, visualization tools, and data backup/preservation services - all necessary HPC components that contribute to Northwestern's competitive edge among peer research institutions.
Northwestern University Information Technology (NUIT) provides campus researchers with the resources and services for conducting advanced computational projects on school and department HPC equipment as well as on the University's large-scale shared high performance computing system, Quest.
Through NUIT's HPC services, University researchers and educators have the opportunity to:
- Develop new algorithms and simulations
- Run data analysis tools on very large datasets
- Query digital archives
- Take advantage of advanced simulation and visualization software
- Leverage collaboration services
- Conduct scientific investigations
- Produce advanced visualizations
- Develop unique educational programs
- Optimize applications for large parallel computing environments
NUIT Support Center
Central service desk for students, faculty, and staff.
Submit a Support Request
Last Updated: 12 September 2011