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About Us

The Cornell University Center for Advanced Computing (CAC) is a leader in high-performance computing systems, applications, and data solutions that enable research success. CAC computing and consulting services help researchers accelerate discovery and broaden impact.

Located on the Ithaca, NY campus of Cornell University, CAC serves the computational and data analysis needs of the Cornell community and their collaborators from science and engineering and the humanities. Examples are astronomers searching for pulsars, biologists analyzing gene sequences, cardiothoracic surgeons reporting and researching treatment outcomes, physicists analyzing high energy collisions, social scientists mining census data, and psychologists studying language acquisition in children.

CAC serves the national community as a partner on the NSF-funded Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE). CAC director David Lifka is the XSEDE Architecture and Design Coordinator. CAC staff consultants develop and deliver XSEDE training programs and software distributions.

As a core service facility, CAC provides high-performance computing and cloud computing services configured with a variety of software including Red Hat Linux, CentOS, Eucalyptus, Hadoop, SQL Server, and MySQL. A large-capacity DataDirect Networks storage system is available for standard and archival storage. CAC configured and operates a public cloud computing service called Red Cloud that offers unique features desired by researchers, i.e., dedicated cores/RAM and no charge for network traffic.

CAC web, database, programming, and code improvement consulting services enable faculty to meet project milestones faster and more cost-effectively. CAC also develops Virtual Workshops that are “always on” so that Cornell educators and outreach specialists can reach wider communities. Center staff teach University classes such as High Performance Computing Tools and Concepts, Scripting in Python and Perl, Atmospheric Physics, and Computational Methods for Nonlinear Systems. Staff also conduct seminars on emerging computing technologies and present technical papers, presentations, and posters at national conferences.

Historic center firsts include: first of 5 U.S. supercomputing centers, first IBM SP1/SP2 supercomputer deployments, first Dell supercomputer deployment, largest Web server in the world deployed at the U.S. Olympics, best simulation of the folding of the protein HDEA from the bacteria E. coli, and first MATLAB Software as a Service.

Awards include: Computerworld/Smithsonian Laureate Award for the visionary use of information technology, Gordon Bell prizes for price/performance, IDC HPC Innovation Excellence Award for breakthrough research on hepatitis C, and Red Hat Innovation Award for best storage implementation.

CAC receives funding from the Cornell University Office of the Vice Provost for Research and Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, with additional funding from the NSF and leading public agencies, foundations, and corporations.

Cornell CAC Partner Program participants include Boeing, Corning, DataDirect Networks, Dell, Eucalyptus, Globus Online, Intel, Johns Hopkins, and MathWorks. Seventy-seven organizations have participated in the Program since its inception.

Cornell faculty who use CAC resources currently have over $100 million in sponsored program research awards from the NSF, NIH, DOD, DOE, NASA, USDA, and other public and private funding agencies.

Learn more about CAC computing and consulting services at services available.

A new faculty flyer (pdf) is also available.