Compute Canada Launches Resource Allocation Competitions for 2017



Today Compute Canada launched its annual Resource Allocation Competitions (RAC), a peer-reviewed process to grant priority access to Compute Canada’s advanced research computing resources. The two competitions — the Resources for Research Groups (RRG) Competition and the Research Platforms and Portals (RPP) Competition — are open to Canadian research projects from all disciplines (Note: RPP applications are by invitation from its Notice of Intent (NOI) stage). The allocations of compute and storage resources are awarded based on scientific merit, quality of the research team, and development of highly-qualified personnel (HQP).

“While many research groups can meet their needs through our Rapid Access Service (RAS), our Resource Allocation Competitions are aimed at individuals and research groups who require compute and storage resources beyond what RAS provides,” says Dugan O’Neil, Compute Canada Chief Science Officer. “Compute Canada’s resources are behind many of today’s scientific milestones — from measuring gravitational waves in space to breaking new ground in artificial intelligence — and our RAC process helps ensure Canada’s top researchers have access to the resources they need to continue producing excellent science and world-class results.”  

Further details on the 2017 Resource Allocation Competitions will be shared in two Q&A Sessions:

English Session
(online only, English presentation with English Q&A)
French Session
(in person, French presentation with bilingual Q&A)
Thursday, October 13
12:00 – 1:30 pm Eastern (EDT)
Location: Online – connection instructions will be emailed to all RSVPs.
Register Online
Friday, October 14
10:00 am – 12:00 pm Eastern (EDT)
Locations: U. Laval, U. de Sherbrooke, U. McGill, and U. de Montréal
Register Online

Advanced research computing and research data management tools are essential components for today’s modern research requirements. Last year’s competitions received 366 applications from projects across the country. Successful recipients spanned all areas of science, including these four researchers featured in Compute Canada’s recent Annual Report:

  • Dr. Randall Martin (Dalhousie University, Physics and Atmospheric Science) uses Compute Canada resources to analyze satellite observations and global chemical transport models to advance the understanding of atmospheric composition, and its effects on air quality and climate.
  • Dr. Yoshua Bengio (Université de Montréal, Computer Science) and his team used Compute Canada resources to develop new algorithms for deep learning that aim to replace the state-of-the-art in machine translation. Over the past year, Bengio’s team reached and then surpassed the performance levels of predecessor systems.
  • Dr. Harald Pfeiffer (University of Toronto, Physics) and his team used Compute Canada resources to contribute to the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, an international group of more than 1,000 scientists in 15 countries. Compute Canada experts and resources helped perform simulations to construct the waveform-models that found gravitational waves — heralded as one of the world’s most momentous discoveries.
  • Dr. Susan Brown (University of Alberta and University of Guelph, English and Film Studies) uses Compute Canada resources to support The Canadian Writing Research Collaboratory (CWRC), an open web-based environment that fosters the use of digital tools and resources for literary studies in and about Canada.

For more information on the 2017 RAC, visit the Resource Allocation Competitions page or contact

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