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New NSF Award Funds SDSC to Conduct HPC Training for Domain Scientists

Published November 3, 2023

SDSC Director of Training Robert Sinkovits speaking in front of the SDSC timeline display.

SDSC Director of Training Robert Sinkovits has been awarded a $500,000 grant for a project called COMPLECS, which stands for COMPrehensive Learning for end-users to Effectively utilize Cyberinfrastructure.

By Kimberly Mann Bruch, SDSC Communications

While successful researchers have the ability to find solutions to complex problems, often the implementation of their computational methods requires a machine that is bigger and more powerful than their desktop computers. Chemists, environmental scientists, geophysicists, biologists and others often find themselves in need of a supercomputer. These domain scientists and applied mathematicians typically work alongside a computational scientist to implement and run their workloads, however, thanks to an award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at UC San Diego, a training program has been developed to better assist with learning the ins and outs of supercomputing.

“We are pleased to offer COMPrehensive Learning for end-users to Effectively utilize Cyberinfrastructure, or COMPLECS, training for our SDSC resource users beginning Spring 2024,” said Bob Sinkovits, director of training at SDSC and principal investigator (PI) for the new three-year $500,000 award. “Nicole Wolter and Marty Kandes, also at SDSC, are co-PIs on the project and we have been working on preliminary plans for this program since our Summer Institute, which will serve as a model for COMPLECS.”

The COMPLECS training program consists of three layers – beginning with foundational knowledge, such as parallel computing concepts and intermediate Linux, that serves as a base for learning other essential and specialized skills depending on the users’ needs. The program will host multi-day in-person workshops and webinars as well as a self-paced online study option.

Additional SDSC team members involved with the COMPLECS effort include Advanced Computing Training Lead Mary Thomas and Andreas Goetz, who is the director of the center’s Computational Chemistry Laboratory.

“One of our goals with the program is to recruit participants from underrepresented groups and domains that haven’t traditionally used supercomputers in conjunction with our work on the ACCESS-CI project,” Thomas said. “We are just thrilled to have this opportunity and grateful to the NSF for funding our work in this arena.”

This program is funded by the NSF Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure (award no. 2320934).