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NCAR Wyoming Supercomputing Center



The NCAR Wyoming Supercomputing Center (NWSC) represents a collaboration between NCAR and the University of Wyoming and through the Wyoming-NCAR Alliance (WNA) a portion of the Yellowstone systems, about 75 million core-hours per year, is reserved for Wyoming-led projects in the atmospheric, earth system, geological and related sciences. Large allocations are overseen by the WNA Resource Advisory Panel (WRAP); a University of Wyoming-managed process.

In addition, allocations may be given to support faculty’s integration of high performance computing in their undergraduate and graduate courses, and to support initial code development, experimentation, application testing and data analysis to be used to strengthen a future grant proposal. Resources may also be made available to a small number of projects funded by other government agencies or by the private sector.

To access the NWSC supercomputers, storage systems and data analysis and visualization resources,  users must apply for allocations.  Applications are reviewed and time is allocated according to the merit and needs of the projects and the availability of resources.

WNA Allocation basics

  • Project-based. Allocations for UW’s portion of NWSC resources are allocated through project that has a single principal investigator (PI), and may include allocations to one or more resources (e.g. compute time, high-performance storage, data acquisition and visualization). The PI uses the same project to request or renew an allocation, as the focus and computational activities evolve throughout the process.
  • Usage metric. The core-hour is the basic unit to measure and track the usage of NWSC resources (including the NWSC supercomputers, high-performance storage system, data analysis and visualization systems). 
  • Eligibility.  All University of Wyoming faculty are eligible to apply for an allocation. Large Allocations must be explicitly linked to funded, peer-reviewed research projects in atmospheric, earth system, geological and related sciences (list of approved areas). An allocation request from a UW researcher can include allocations for collaborating researchers from other US institutions who are PIs or senior personnel in the funded project.  Large Allocation requests will be evaluated semi-annually by the WNA Resource Advisory Panel (WRAP).
  • Small allocations. UW graduate students and post-docs, and UW faculty working towards creating data, testing algorithms, etc., for a future grant proposal are eligible to apply for a start-up allocation. No panel review is needed for small allocation requests, and such requests can usually be accommodated within a few business days. Small allocation requests can be made at any time using the online form available by selecting the Small Allocation Form tab on the left.  
  • Educational allocations. NWSC encourages the use of high-performance computing in undergraduate and graduate courses at UW or Wyoming Community colleges and accounts can be provided to individual students and the instructor for assignments involving numerical simulations, modeling, and use of recently developed computational architecture. Faculty needing to use a NWSC resource for an undergraduate or graduate course they are teaching should send e-mail to describing the anticipated software needs, storage and computing usage at least two weeks prior to the start of the semester the course is taught. If the anticipated usage is more than 50,000 core-hours for the class, then WNA will want an extended abstract describing how the resource estimate was calculated.  If anticipated usage for the class is more than 200,000 core-hours, then a large allocation request must be submitted for WRAP review.
  • Duration. Research project and small allocations are for one year. Educational allocations are for the duration of the related class.

Download slides about the allocation basics and advise on preparing a request. 


NWSC Visitor Center Designed to Educate and Inspire Public about Science

October 2, 2012 — A simulated mini-tornado, various short videos depicting everything from wind to wildfire simulations, and a number of interactive touch-screen kiosks will make their debut and help the science come alive when the NCAR-Wyoming Supercomputing Center (NWSC) is ceremonially opened Oct. 15 by an invite-only delegation composed of the many partners behind its construction.

Seven UW Research Projects Chosen for First Cycle of Supercomputer Use

June 13, 2012 — The National Science Foundation has chosen seven University of Wyoming research projects -- ranging from hydrology of the Colorado River Basin to planet formation from star debris to fluid dynamics of wind turbines -- that will use the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)-Wyoming Supercomputing Center (NWSC) in Cheyenne this fall.

UW Student to Help Create 3-D Animation Software for Scientists

March 23, 2012 — Ashish Dhital will play a key role in transforming crunched computer data into a more visually appealing form for National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) scientists.

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NCAR Wyoming Supercomputing Center is a Gamechanger for Wyoming

Bob Jensen, CEO of the Wyoming Business Council, talks about the benefits, the partnerships and the potential today's NCAR groundbreaking outside Cheyenne signals for the future of the city, the region and the state. "We are very pleased to welcome NCAR to Cheyenne and to Wyoming," Jensen said. "This changes the game for Wyoming, and we are very proud to be a partner with NCAR in this process."

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