National Research Infrastructure Roadmap release

2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap release

The Australian Government has released a comprehensive National Research Infrastructure Roadmap outlining the federal research infrastructure priorities that are essential to building Australian research excellence into the future. The Pawsey Supercomputing Centre is pleased to see how High Performance Computing (HPC) infrastructure has underpinned all the priorities for this Roadmap.

The Roadmap was released by the Minister for Education and Training, Senator Simon Birmingham; and Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Senator Arthur Sinodinos. “The Roadmap provides comprehensive advice and highlights the success of Australia’s current research infrastructure system in supporting research excellence”, Minister Sinodinos said.

The Pawsey Supercomputing Centre is eager to see this implemented.

Minister Birmingham said that the Roadmap was developed through extensive consultation with the research community, universities, research institutes, state government and industry. The Roadmap identified nine focus areas:

  • Digital Data and eResearch Platforms
  • Platforms for Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
  • Characterisation (Techniques for Understanding the Properties of Materials)
  • Advanced Fabrication and Manufacturing
  • Advanced Physics and Astronomy
  • Earth and Environmental Systems
  • Biosecurity
  • Complex Biology
  • Therapeutic Development

The Digital Data and eResearch Platforms is the key focus area amongst the nine that is aligned with Australia’s science and research priorities.

Under the Digital Data and eResearch Platforms, four areas were identified to deliver adequate nationally coordinated eResearch infrastructure for Australian researchers – High Performance Computing; Advanced Research Network; Access and Authentication and Integrated Data-Intensive Infrastructure.

The High Performance Computing area under the Digital Data and eResearch Platforms will prioritise enhancing existing national HPC infrastructure.

The National Research Infrastructure Roadmap recognises this need for the Tier 1 HPC facilities to upgrade their infrastructure to accommodate researchers’ growing requirements. The Roadmap indicates toward the continuous cycle of having at least one facility operating at full capacity while the other receives its upgrade requirements.

This means that Australia will always have state-of-the-art High Performance Computing centres available for its international race to deliver scientific solutions to global issues, and to deliver innovations which return social and economic dividends.

In order to maintain competitiveness between the two national supercomputing facilities, the correct technology and expertise mix is required. The Pawsey Supercomputing Centre, one of two Tier 1 HPC centres in Australia, is integral to the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project’s data and processing requirements – the largest scientific endeavour of human history. The Pawsey Supercomputing Centre’s vision is to bridge the gap and provide a solid support to researchers with the most powerful computing infrastructure.

The projects undertaken with the HPCs are data intensive and have international reach and collaboration requirements. In order to integrate past, present and future data, systematically and reliably, a new platform for collaboration is required.

Integrated data-intensive cloud based infrastructure, according to the Roadmap, “will improve the quality, reliability, durability, and accessibility of data, ensuring the outputs of research are more transparent”.

It is essential for this cloud infrastructure to include HPC, expansive storage and network access capabilities as well as data, collaboration and software services, skills and knowledge essential to HPC systems and service providers, such as the Pawsey Supercomputing Centre. These platforms need to reach researchers with ease to enable them to integrate their data with the new infrastructure.

As the Southern Hemisphere’s most powerful facility of its type, the Pawsey Supercomputing Centre is central to securing the nation’s research future and is already delivering results in key scientific disciplines. The Centre is excited about the Roadmap as HPC underpins the nine focus areas for infrastructure investment, especially the Digital Data and eResearch Platforms.

To read the official report click here.