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New Broadening Participation Allocations now available on Blue Waters supercomputer—apply by March 1

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications’ (NCSA) Blue Waters project has announced a new sub-allocation category called “Broadening Participation.” This new category is open to faculty and research staff at U.S. academic institutions who have not previously been a PI on a research allocation on the Blue Waters system and who are in one or more of the following categories:

  • Institutions categorized as Minority Serving Institutions
  • Institutions within EPSCoR jurisdictions
  • PIs who are women, underrepresented minorities, veterans, or people with disabilities
  • Researchers and scholars in humanities, arts, or social sciences

Blue Waters allocations are intended for parallel computational and data analysis research problems that require the unique capabilities of the Blue Waters system, such as total memory, data size or bandwidth, or the computational and data scale of the system. Project proposals are expected to demonstrate that no other computing resource is better suited for the proposed problem.

Requests for Broadening Participation allocations may be for up to 200,000 node-hours (approximately 6.4 million core hours) for, at most, one year. Projects will be judged on the basis of their scientific merit, suitability for Blue Waters, and demonstrated need for the unique capabilities of Blue Waters. Requests must be submitted by March 15, 2018. Award notifications will be announced early April 2018. Apply here.

Additional details about Broadening Participation allocations are available at

In addition to research allocations, faculty and staff from any U.S. academic/educational institution may also apply for education allocations. These allocations are intended for courses, training sessions, workshops, institutes, and other events focused on training and education related to petascale computing. Requests for education allocations are accepted on an ongoing basis. For more details visit:

Inquiries regarding all types of allocations may be made to

You can learn more about the Blue Waters resources and services by viewing the recording of the Blue Waters Overview webinar.

About NCSA

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign provides supercomputing and advanced digital resources for the nation’s science enterprise. At NCSA, University of Illinois faculty, staff, students, and collaborators from around the globe use advanced digital resources to address research grand challenges for the benefit of science and society. NCSA has been advancing one third of the Fortune 50® for more than 30 years by bringing industry, researchers, and students together to solve grand challenges at rapid speed and scale.

About Blue Waters

Blue Waters is one of the most powerful supercomputers in the world. Located at the University of Illinois, it can complete more than 1 quadrillion calculations per second on a sustained basis and more than 13 times that at peak speed. The peak speed is almost 3 million times faster than the average laptop. Blue Waters is supported by the National Science Foundation and the University of Illinois; NCSA manages the Blue Waters project and provides expertise to help scientists and engineers take full advantage of the system for their research.

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