Four times faster than its predecessor and capable of 63 million million calculations a second, HECToR is designed to facilitate high-end research.
Based at Edinburgh University’s Advanced Computing Facility (ACF), the service will run for six years and be operated by EPCC (Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre). The computer is a Cray XT4 system, and Oxfordshire-based Numerical Algorithms Group (NAG) supplies support for the applications software.
The procurement project for HECToR was funded and managed by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) on behalf of the UK Research Councils.
HECToR will provide UK researchers with the means to undertake increasingly complex computer simulations across a range of scientific disciplines, reducing the reliance on time-consuming and expensive experimentation. This will include work in forecasting the impact of climate change, fluctuations in ocean currents, projecting the spread of epidemics, designing new materials and developing new drugs.