Applying to use HPC services

The next cut off date for HPC applications to use ARCHER and NEXCS from 1 October 2019 to 31 March 2020 will be Monday 23 September 2019. These applications will be considered by the HPC steering committee in October 2019. If you received an allocation in April 2019, you do not need to re apply, unless requested to do so.

Unfortunately, as demand now significantly exceeds available resource, we no longer accept late applications. Late applications will be considered at a subsequent meeting of the committee in approximately six months.

Please note that, due to the ARCHER to ARCHER2 transition, there will be a gap in service in spring 2020 during which ARCHER will not be available. Initial estimates suggest that the downtime of the service could be up to 11 weeks in the period February to May 2020.

We welcome new applicants to NERC's High Performance Computing Facilities. Before applying, all applicants must contact the relevant consortia leader (contact details below).

It is essential that applicants indicate on the Je-S form - in the section titled 'Summary of Resources Required for Project' - that use of research council facilities will be required, otherwise NERC cannot guarantee access to HPC. Those who have stated a need for research council facilities will have priority of access to HPC. Costs are not required. Please also refer to the 'Current policy on access to HPC' (available in the Downloads section).

Consortia leaders

Atmospheric & Polar Sciences Consortium
Dr Grenville Lister
National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS)
Department of Meteorology
University of Reading

Mineral & Geophysics Consortium
Professor John Brodholt
Department of Earth Sciences
University College London (UCL)

Oceanography & Shelf Seas Consortium
Dr Andrew Coward
Ocean Modelling & Forecasting Group
National Oceanography Centre (NOC) Southampton

If you are unsure which of the three consortia is most appropriate for your application, please contact Dr Andrew Coward in the first instance.

Large grant applications

Please refer to the guidelines (available in the Downloads section) and the research grants & fellowships handbook before applying. Applications for large grants must:

  • be discussed with the relevant consortia leader (see details above)
  • state an estimate of the total HPC use in Allocation Units (AU)
  • be accompanied by the HPC 'new' form (available in the Downloads section) when more than 160 million AU are required in any one year.

What to do once you have been awarded NERC funding

Once your application has been approved for funding, and following receipt of your award letter, you will need to submit the 'new' HPC form.

Please note that the main allocations for HPC are made at a Steering Committee meeting in spring (typically March) of each year, with allocations awarded from April to March of the following year. For each subsequent year of usage, users must update their request by submitting a Continuation Form for each grant utilising HPC. These requests are also reviewed at the annual spring meeting of the HPC Steering Committee. Any applications received outside of the spring time frame will be assessed at an autumn Steering Committee Meeting or, if urgent, via email, as appropriate.

Applying for eCSE

Information about embedded CSE - external link - (eCSE) support is available on the ARCHER website.


General NERC HPC enquiries:
Oliver Knevitt
07712 233084

Service enquiries:
ARCHER helpdesk
0131 650 5029