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NCSA's Delta Supercomputer to be Allocable by XSEDE this Summer

The new system, geared towards GPU computing, will be open for nationwide XSEDE allocations starting in June for projects beginning in August 2021.

Delta, a $10 million National Science Foundation-funded advanced computing system housed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois, will soon be accessible to researchers across the country via XSEDE allocation.

Using a design that leverages graphics processing units (GPUs) in combination with CPU architectures well-suited for scientific computing, Delta will be particularly suited to evolving research needs that heavily rely on GPU-intensive activities. Once available, Delta will be the most performant GPU-based NSF resource, unlocking cutting-edge capabilities for researchers nationwide, regardless of location, via XSEDE.

"Everyone at NCSA is excited to get Delta up and operational for the NSF community," said Tim Boerner, Timothy Boerner, Deputy Project Director for both the XSEDE and Delta projects. "It is a very forward-looking system in a number of different ways, such as the focus on science gateways support, improved accessibility, the relaxed-POSIX file system we have planned, and of course the massive amount of GPU computing performance this system will add to the XSEDE allocations pool."

Delta's first allocations are expected to be made during the June XSEDE Resource Allocation Committee (XRAC) meeting, with jobs scheduled to go into production in August of this year. Delta was one of five NSF-funded systems awarded last summer, all of which will be partially allocated by XSEDE.

Read more about Delta below, and dive into the system's specifications here.

NCSA will integrate Delta into the national cyberinfrastructure ecosystem through the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment and partner with the Science Gateways Community Institute to provide platform access serving a broad range of needs. Boasting a non-POSIX file system with a POSIX-like interface, Delta allows applications to reap the benefits of modern file systems without rewriting code. And the Delta team will advance accessibility, providing greater usability of the interfaces by the widest possible audience, and in helping emerging research areas, such as computational archaeology and digital agriculture, take advantage of new computing methods.

Delta will provide ample professional development opportunities to adapt research applications to more optimally use its key features. Researchers who currently have GPU projects or are considering migrating to GPU architectures will find ready assistance in migrating the work to Delta.