Supercomputing partnership comes to a close

National grid computing infrastructure to live on

After nearly a decade of serving the research community with high-performance and grid computing infrastructure, the Australian Partnership for Advanced Computing (APAC) has announced it will transition to new arrangements later this year.

APAC was established in 1998 as part of the federal government's Backing Australia's Ability program and has been hosted by The Australian National University (ANU) and governed by the APAC Board. APAC involves six state-based partners in addition to the ANU and CSIRO.

The APAC board agreed to recommend the wind-down of the partnership as part of a transition to the plan being implemented for the Platforms for Collaboration (PfC) capability of the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS).

The Board supports the NCRIS PfC plan as a way of "building on the APAC achievements" and on the skills base that has been developed by APAC programs in high-performance computing and grid services.

Chair of the APAC board professor John Zillman said APAC is proud of its achievements and local researchers now have access to a world-class peak computing service within a national grid infrastructure.

"Australia now has a significant skills base to support users of eResearch infrastructure and services," Zillman said.

Zillman said APAC had received outstanding support from the Australian government through the Department of Education, Science and Training.

"The initial support in 1998 catalyzed the establishment of APAC and its continuing support had enabled APAC to lay the foundation for a long-term commitment to the national advanced computing and grid infrastructure for Australian research," he said.

APAC executive director professor John O'Callaghan completed his term at the end of June but will assist APAC during the transition to the new arrangements.

The APAC board has commissioned a report on the contributions and achievements of APAC which will be published in October 2007.

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