The future is now

Tuesday April 5, 2016, By Anne Craig, Communications Officer
Queen’s University high performance computing facility undergoes an upgrade

Queen’s University unveiled today the Centre for Advanced Computing, the new identity of the former High Performance Virtual Computing Laboratory (HPVCL).

Originally formed in 1999 as HPCVL, the CAC is a consortium of four universities led by Queen’s that also includes Carleton University, the University of Ottawa, and the Royal Military College of Canada. The facility specializes in providing secure computing resources, and support for academic and medical research clients.

The new name reflects an increased focus on supporting the use of advanced research computing to support the academic community. Over the summer the CAC will also undergo a significant equipment and technology upgrade.

“This upgrade and rebranding is in step with the changing times,” says CAC Executive Director, Don Aldridge. “The newer equipment is substantially less expensive to operate and will provide a state-of-the-art technology infrastructure for all of our clients. Our highly secure facility is moving with the evolution of technology and providing the capacity required to handle the truly big data requirements of many of today’s research projects.”

Throughout this transition all current services, policies and accounts from HPCVL will remain unchanged. CAC will continue to be an active Compute Canada partner site, and a provider of resources supporting the National Digital Infrastructure Platform.

 “Despite having existed for over 16 years, the centre isn’t well known by many at Queen’s,” says Mr. Aldridge. “People are frequently surprised to discover that in many cases we provide free computing, free data storage and back-up, and free hands-on scientific support.” 

CAC provides a world-class environment supporting more than 400 Canadian research teams, comprising some 2,100 researchers working in a wide variety of fields.

“The facility, and in particular the expertise of the individuals employed there,  is accessible from anywhere in Canada, providing researchers with the computing resources, and, more importantly, the support they need to undertake innovative research that helps to drive our economy,” says Dr. Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research).

To learn more, visit the CAC website.