PRACE-Italy is the special contribution of the Ministry of Universities and Research (MUR) for the participation of Italy in the activities related to the European infrastructure for supercomputing PRACE, with a focus on modelling applications for Earth Sciences.
The mission of the ESFRI infrastructure called PRACE (Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe) is to provide supercomputing (high performance computing, HPC) and data management resources for European research excellence, improving the energy efficiency of HPC systems and reducing their environmental impact. Researchers access the resources offered by PRACE through an open and transparent European peer-review mechanism, aimed at ensuring the use of resources on the basis of scientific merit and at fostering scientific excellence in a context of global competitiveness. The national references of PRACE are Cineca (MUR delegate in the Board of Directors and in the Council of PRACE) and OGS (MUR referent), which collaborate in the PRACE-Italy initiative.
The main aims of PRACE-Italy are:
- To promote the collaboration with the national ICT industry for the realization of innovative computing architectures in the roadmap towards the establishment of a Data-Centric Exascale Lab with open access to the scientific community and closely linked to the impact on the country system.
- To support the growth of expertise and methodologies in the HPC field for the development and use of innovative algorithms in the Digital Twin Earth field for the access and use of Exascale architectures.
- Supporting the training of researchers and capacity building, especially in the field of HPC applications for Earth Sciences, both as a response to the needs emerging in the national and European roadmaps concerning the reduction of the eSkill gap in the scientific and technological field with respect to access to and use of HPC technologies, and in line with what has been done by PRACE at a European level.
Thanks to Cineca's technological support, PRACE-Italy intends to contribute to the creation of a common platform (both infrastructural and of scientific excellence), which can support the national and international scientific community engaged in the challenges of HPC modelling for applications in Earth Sciences towards Exascale computing. PRACE-Italy has therefore foreseen for its entire duration a constant collaboration with other research institutes and universities, both in infrastructural support activities and in training and capacity building.
The governance of PRACE-Italy is based on the collaboration between Cineca and OGS, and follows a line of technological and training support for modelling activities in the field of Earth Sciences, ratified year by year through a scientific convention.