HPC Introduction


High Performance Computing (HPC) provides researchers with the ability to expand their data processing, simulation and computation across hundreds of cores.

Over recent years there has been a huge increase in the number of HPC systems available for researchers and this has led to widespread use across many disciplines.

Architecture of an HPC Cluster

The basic architecture of a cluster consists of login nodes which allow access and submission of jobs to a scheduler, jobs are then dispatched to compute nodes for execution.

Due to the need for high performance, nodes are connected with high speed ethernet or low-latency InfiniBand.

Cluster Diagram

HPC Tiers

Clusters are separated into three tiers in the UK: Tier 3 Local facilities, Tier 2 Specialist Hubs, and the Tier 1 National service.

Tier 3 - Local


Apocrita is the local cluster at QMUL, we have a variety of nodes and allow access to QMUL users and collaborators. See HPC Compute Nodes for information.

Tier 2 - High Performance Computing Centres

We have access to a number of EPSRC Tier 2 clusters via consortium membership. These clusters are suitable for larger multi-node parallel jobs. The Tier 2 pages have more information.

Tier 1 - National


Host Institution Cores Nodes RAM per Node Scheduler
Edinburgh 118,080 4920 64GB PBS