June 26 – 30, 2017

Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF), the Blue Waters project at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF), and the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) are organizing a free, week-long "Scaling to Petascale" Institute. The goal is to prepare participants to scale simulations and data analytics programs to petascale-class computing systems in support of computational and data-enabled discovery for all fields of study.

Organizers are working to engage a large national audience. This will be accomplished by streaming the sessions to a number of collaborating organizations using full-duplex audio/video connections. Sessions will be also webcast on YouTube live, although with a lower level of support for the participants. Participants must register to attend one of the host sites or to watch the sessions on YouTube. Recordings of the presentations will be made publicly available after the institute is completed.

Applications for collaborating host sites are being accepted through June 1 - see side bar to the left for details.


The institute is free and open for anyone: from graduate and undergraduate students to postdocs, researchers, scholars, educators, practitioners, and faculty. No emphasis on any particular domain of science is made so that institute is beneficial to a broad community. Individuals who are current or pending users of large-scale HPC systems will naturally benefit the most from this institute.

The institute is also beneficial to research teams who are preparing to scale their codes to petascale-class resources, people who are working on parallel codes, or have a need to scale up computational codes and/or data analysis programs. People who are using community codes and applications packages will benefit less from the institute but are encouraged to attend to learn new concepts in petascale computing.

Computing Resources

The institute will provide accounts to participants who register to attend at one of the collaborating organization sites. Training accounts will be provided on the Blue Waters system at NCSA, the Stampede II system at the Texas Advanced Computing Center, and the HPC systems at NERSC.

Participants watching the YouTube live webcast will not be provided with training accounts, due to security policies and procedures for settting up training accounts.

Participant Prerequisites

Participants should have the following background, knowledge and experience:

  • Familiarity with programming in Fortran, C, C++, Python or a comparable language
  • Familiarity with Linux
  • Familiarity with use of clusters and/or HPC systems
  • Basic understanding of MPI, but participants need not be proficient with MPI
How to Participate

Participants may attend the institute at one of the collaborating host sites to receive full support during the institute.  At these sites, participants will be able to verbally ask questions of the presenters through two-way video conferencing facilities. Participants will receive training accounts on the Blue Waters, NERSC and TACC systems. Staff will be available at each site to assist during hands-on sessions. Seating at each site is limited, and registration will be handled on a first-come first-served basis.  

If your site is not a collaborating host site, you may encourage your organization to apply to become a host site by May 1. See the side bar to the left to apply to be a collaborating host site.

Alternatively, you may watch the institute via YouTube live, but at a reduced level of support. Participants will be able to submit written questions through social media tools provided by the institute. Due to account allocations policies, participants will NOT be able to receive accounts on the institute computing systems. Everyone wishing to view the YouTube live session must register.

How to Register

All participants at collaborating host sites or watching the YouTube live session must register.  


See the sidebar to the left for the tentative agenda for the institute.