Skip to content


SPAdes is an assembly toolkit containing various assembly pipelines.

SPAdes is available as a module on Apocrita.


To run the default installed version of SPAdes, simply load the spades module:

$ module load spades
$ --help

SPAdes genome assembler <VERSION>

Usage: /share/apps/centos7/spades/<VERSION>/bin/ [options] -o <output_dir>

Basic options:
-o     <output_dir>     directory to store all the resulting files (required)
--sc                    this flag is required for MDA (single-cell) data
--meta                  this flag is required for metagenomic sample data
--rna                   this flag is required for RNA-Seq data
--plasmid               runs plasmidSPAdes pipeline for plasmid detection
--iontorrent            this flag is required for IonTorrent data
--test                  runs SPAdes on toy dataset
-h/--help               prints this usage message
-v/--version            prints version

Advanced options:
--dataset       <filename>      file with dataset description in YAML format
-t/--threads    <int>           number of threads
                                [default: 16]
-m/--memory     <int>           RAM limit for SPAdes in Gb (terminates if exceeded)
                                [default: 250]
--tmp-dir       <dirname>       directory for temporary files
                                [default: <output_dir>/tmp]
-k              <int,int,...>   comma-separated list of k-mer sizes (must be odd and
                                less than 128) [default: 'auto']

For usage documentation, run --help.

Example job

Selecting the number of threads and memory

By default, SPAdes will run multi-threaded on 16 cores and 250Gb (or all available memory for nodes with less than 250Gb). To prevent overloading a compute node, you should override this by passing the --threads parameter with the value of ${NSLOTS} and the --memory parameter with the value of ${SGE_HGR_m_mem_free%.*}.

Serial job

Here is an example job running on 1 core and 1GB of memory:

#$ -cwd
#$ -j y
#$ -pe smp 1
#$ -l h_rt=1:0:0
#$ -l h_vmem=1G

module load spades -o <output_dir> \
          -1 example1.fastq \
          -2 example1.fastq \
          --threads ${NSLOTS} \
          --memory ${SGE_HGR_m_mem_free%.*}