Partnerships & Consulting

Partnership Program

partnership shaking hands

The URC Partnership Program is designed to encourage faculty to participate in the cooperative development of a shared HPC computational resource instead of creating, maintaining, and administering smaller systems dedicated to their own research. 

Faculty participating in the program purchase additional components (processing or storage) integrated into one of the URC’s existing HPC facilities. URC provides the necessary infrastructure and support and guarantees the “owner” exclusive access to the resources when needed in exchange for the right to make the resources available to other researchers whenever those resources would otherwise be idle. This cooperative arrangement frees up faculty researchers from the burdens of managing their own isolated systems while creating a shared resource that benefits the campus community.

URC Provides:
  • space in a URC  computing rack in a campus server room, including all necessary power, cooling, and networking.
  • installation and maintenance of the hardware, operating system and associated systems software
  • configuration and administration of security, user accounts, storage quotas, job scheduling, and access rights
  • access to common applications, including language compilers, editors, scripting languages, and utilities.
  • short term storage for input data and results of research calculations (within reason – additional storage may also be purchased by faculty as part of this program)
  • periodic data backups for disaster recovery
  • active monitoring and troubleshooting sufficient to maximize system uptime
Researcher Provides:
  • server hardware or networked storage modules compatible with URC specifications
  • all required software and licenses not already present on the URC system

Negotiable:

  • URC may agree to provide and support additional applications if the requested software is of sufficient value to the overall user community (for example, additional language compilers or commercial libraries)
  • URC may agree to provide license service for user-supplied applications if the licensing mechanism is compatible with URC standards

 URC Agrees to:

  • grant the researcher dedicated access to the purchased hardware (or its equivalent) either automatically through the job scheduling system or, on request, via manual intervention
  • grant the researcher access to the remainder on the HPC system on a first-come, first-served basis

Researcher Agrees to:

  • allow URC to grant other campus researchers access to their resources whenever dedicated access is not required
  • allow a reasonable grace period to transition resources from shared to dedicated use
  • accept dedicated access to equivalent resources as a substitute for access to the specific resources purchased
  • install and manage their own discipline-specific applications, and/or accept reasonable limitations on the number and complexity of applications that must be supported by URC staff
  • work primarily through the normal access mechanisms for the facility, including using the shared job scheduling system and the designated interactive hosts (exceptions can be made based on software limitations)
  • accept that access to the resource will be strictly at a user level (no root or administrative access can be allowed)
  • accept that user account names, acceptable use policies, security requirements, etc., must conform to UNC Charlotte, OneIT and URC standards.

For more details or to participate in the Partnership Program, contact us [LINK TO URC DIRECTORY].

Technical Consulting

CONSULTING AND ASSISTANCE WITH DEVELOPMENT OF GRANT PROPOSALS

University Research Computing offers consulting services for faculty developing research grant proposals that include access to high-performance computing and/or networking resources. The services offered may be customized on an individual basis depending on the needs of the requesting faculty member and may include any of the following items:

  • Reviewing completed proposals, specifically any sections dealing with requested computing resources, for accuracy of the descriptions of the technology, appropriateness of the requested technology for the purposes described, and identification of any gaps or overlooked items in the request.
  • Assessing the support requirements of any requested computing technology, including the need for dedicated space, power, cooling, networking, or support personnel.
  • Working with the requesting faculty to develop technical specifications for required hardware, software and support.
  • Developing cost estimates and/or working with vendors to obtain pricing information or formal price quotes as needed to support grant requests.
  • Identifying and providing descriptions for any existing resources that can be made available to support the proposed research (such descriptions are often encouraged or required in proposals to federal agencies). This may include resources supplied by URC or located within individual colleges or departments.

Faculty wishing to take advantage of these services should make every effort to contact us well in advance of the proposal due date so that we have adequate time to respond. While there are no absolute deadlines, faculty should plan to contact us at least two weeks before the desired submission date to get assistance with developing specifications and obtaining price quotes, at least one week in advance to have a proposal reviewed for accuracy and support needs, and at least 3 days in advance to get information on existing resources.

For more information or to request assistance, please contact us  [LINK TO URC DIRECTORY]. Faculty requesting computational resources may also be interested in URC’s Partnership Program above.