The EuroCC project under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program, was launched on 1 September 2020 with the aim of building a European network of 33 national high performance computing (HPC) centers. Each of the 33 centers, part of the EuroCC network, will act at national level to map existing HPC and related competences, analyze big data and artificial intelligence, identify and address gaps, develop visions, policies and procedures, to enhance collaboration and the application of best practices in Europe. The Competence Centers will concentrate HPC expertise at national level and facilitate access to European HPC opportunities for researchers and public administration, as well as for various industry sectors, by offering individual solutions to a wide range of users.
Bulgaria participates in the EuroCC project through a consortium coordinated by the Institute of Information and Communication Technologies (IICT-BAS) and Sofia University “St. Kl. Ohridski ”and UNWE as members of the consortium. The three partners of the Bulgarian HPC Competence Centre are the leading organizations for the 3 biggest projects in the priority area: “Informatics and ICT”, funded by the Operational Program “Science and Education for Smart Growth” with duration 2018-2023: IICT coordinates the Center of Excellence in Informatics and ICT ( http://ict.acad.bg/), SU coordinates the Centre of Excellence „Universities of Science, Informatics and Technology in the e-Society” (https://unite-bg.eu/en), and UNWE coordinates the Centre of Competence “Digitalization of economy in the presence of Big Data” (http://bigdatacc.bg/). The participants carry diverse technical and scientific background in the area of HPC and ICT in general, so as to ensure achievement of the project objectives and guarantee the overall success.
The expected status of the Bulgarian NCC after implementing the activities planned in this project, will bring the HPC expertise and services at a new, mature level. The expected new equipment (Petascale HPC systems) will be matched with capable, well organized teams of specialists and will be accessible through easy to use services. Increased awareness in the society in general about the benefits of having these types of hardware and expertise in the Bulgarian NCC will be attained. The best practices, policies and procedures of leading European partners should be adapted and adopted at national level. The HPC has to be established as a popular topic for SMEs.
Through establishing an effective Bulgarian HPC Competence Centre, interconnected with other European HPC Competence Centres, the uptake of HPC by academia, industry and government, will achieve maturity and provide new opportunities for high-level research and development.