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System Access Application

Current Call for Proposal for large projects.



Researchers can submit proposals for getting access to our HPC resources. The applications are evaluated in a technical review that ensures the compatibility with our infrastructure and the eligibility of the principal investigator. The subsequent scientific review evaluates the appropriateness of resource usage for the proposed research project. For projects with low computing resource demands, teaching purposes, and research projects that have already been scientifically reviewed, simplified rules apply.

Besides access to HPC we provide a portfolio of preinstalled applications and offer support for software installation/configuration of project-specific applications. We advise our users on using the resources in an efficient way. In particular, we provide specialized consulting services for the user communities of atomistic simulations, optoelectronics and quantum photonics, and machine learning for intelligent systems. Furthermore, PC² encourages approximate computing and the acceleration of applications with Field-Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA). Proposals from young scientists and underrepresented groups are particularly encouraged.

Our HPC consulting team is available to assist interested users in all phases of application and implementation of approved projects and can be reached at pc2-support(at)uni-paderborn(dot)de.

How to apply for HPC resources?

Scientists can apply for HPC resources required for their research activities. The requested resources are managed as a project with a default duration of one year. If necessary, a project can be renewed after one year by following the process of submitting a new application.
Applications have to be submitted through the Online project application system (PC²-JARDS)  and must comply to the project classification, resource allowance and eligibility criteria listed in the following table. If you need a commitment of compute resources for a project proposal, please have a look at the FAQ section.

Project Class Purpose HPC System   Location of Principal Investigator (*) CPU-Core-hours, resp. GPU-Core-Hours, per project Granting period/Project duration Review Process Remarks
Projects with large resource requirements
(e.g. large research activity)




> 15 Mio. CPU core-h and/or > 100,000 GPU-h or FPGA-h

one year
multi-year, extensions possible
four times a year,
technical review and
external scientific peer review

This is an NHR-project.

Call for Proposal

Guide to apply or extend 


Projects with medium size resource requirements (e.g. medium-sized research activity, large scale GPU accelerated application)



DE > 4 Mio. and <= 15 Mio. CPU-core-h
and/or <= 100,000 GPU-h or FPGA-h
one year
multi-year, extensions possible
continuous submission,
technical review and
external scientific peer review

This is an NHR-project.

Can be submitted at any time.

Guide to apply or extend


Small Projects with small resource requirements
(e.g. small to medium-sized research activity, FPGA or GPU accelerated application, PhD thesis)



UPB, NRW (only locations without local/Tier-3 resources) <= 4 Mio. CPU core-h and
<= 10,000 GPU-h or FPGA-h
one year, extensions possible continuous submission,
technical review and internal scientific review
Guide to apply

Project with a special emphasis on FPGA acceleration of HPC codes (e.g. in scope of AMD/Xilinx HACC program)



Global <= 4 Mio. CPU core-h and <= 10,000 FPGA-h one year, extensions possible continuous submission,
technical review and internal scientific review

Scientists of research and teaching institutions worldwide can be granted access to FPGA systems in the context of a research collaboration with PC².

Guide to apply

  Teaching (courses, Bachelor or Master thesis) Noctua1 UPB, NRW (only locations without local/Tier-3 resources) <= 100,000 CPU core-h 3 - 6 months continuous submission,
technical review 

Thesis with focus on FPGA-acceleration of HPC codes can be granted access to Noctua2.

Guide to apply

Test Porting applications, scalability analysis Noctua1


DE depending on purpose, by default 100,000 CPU core-h, 1,000 GPU-h one month continuous submission,
technical review

Noctua2 can be used for GPU- and FPGA-accelerated applications, Noctua1 can be used for GPU-accelerated applications.

Guide to apply

(*) Global= Research and teaching institutions worldwide
     DE = Academic institutions in Germany
     NRW = Research institutions located in North Rhine-Westphalia (State NRW)
     UPB = Paderborn University

Frequently asked questions?

  • How do I get a user account at PC2?
    Answer: Please follow the guide on getting a user account.
  • Which academic level/title is required for a principal investigator (PI)?
    Answer: The PI needs to be a Professor or the PI needs to have a doctor's degree (Ph.D., Dr.).
  • How many small projects can a PI have?
    Answer: A PI can have multiple small projects but the sum of the granted resources must not exceed the limits for a small project.
  • Can the resources of a project be increased after it has been granted?
    Answer: Yes but different rules apply depending on the project category. Please contact pc2-support(at)uni-paderborn(dot)de.
  • Can a project deadline be extended?
    Answer: Yes, an extention is possible. There are two different rules depending on the extention length
  • Can projects run for more than one year (multi-year projects)?
    Answer: Yes, but the computing resources are granted on a yearly basis.
  • What if I don't want to actually apply for compute resources but need the commitment of the availability of compute resources for another research project proposal.
    Answer: Please contact us via pc2-support(at)uni-paderborn(dot)de. We can for example write a letter of support or letter of intent that you can submit with your research project proposal.

How to get a user account?

  • Members of the Paderborn University have to use their IMT account.
  • Scientists without an IMT account have to apply for an account here: PC²-JARDS.

How to get support?

How do I have to submit a project report?

Please send the information to pc2-support(at)uni-paderborn(dot)de

Which formal regulations apply?

Resource Access Eligibility Rules

The conditions for accessing our HPC systems are mandated by the grant agreement rules of the funding agency as well as federal law, state law, and university regulations. The eligibility of the applicant is checked as part of the computing time proposal reviewing process.

The most important rules are summarized below.

  1. Our HPC systems shall be primarily used for quality controlled i.e. peer-reviewed research. Use for teaching purposes is also permissible but the amount of resources that can be requested is substantially lower.
  2. Our computing infrastructure is publicly funded and can therefore only be used for research that makes the results available to the general public.
    1. Foundational research funded by DFG or ERC is generally eligible to be executed on our HPC systems.
    2. Collaborative research between academic and industrial partners, e.g. funded by BMBF, BMWi, European Commissions typically also qualifies for being executed on our HPC systems, if the results are public.
    3. Contract research where results are confidential is typically not eligible to be executed on our systems.
  3. The institution association of the principal investigator of a computing time proposal determines which computer systems can be used:
    1. Members of Paderborn University can use our Tier 3 HPC systems (currently Noctua 1) for small research projects and education as well as a part of our Tier 2 system (currently Noctua 2) for large research projects free of charge.
    2. Members from universities in NRW that do not operate HPC systems can use our Tier 3 HPC systems (currently Noctua 1) for small research projects and education free of charge.
    3. Members from universities in NRW can use our Tier 3 HPC systems (currently Noctua 1) also for large research projects and education free of charge.
    4. Scientists at any universities in Germany can apply for access for our Tier 2 HPC systems (currently Noctua 2). The use is free of charge and these applications are evaluated using the review process explained above.
    5. Scientists of research and teaching institutions worldwide can be granted access to selected HPC systems in the context of a research collaboration with PC², e.g., for evaluating novel hard and software technologies. Interested parties are advised to send an informal inquiry to pc2-support(at)uni-paderborn(dot)de before submitting a formal application to discuss the possibilities.
  4. Citizens of countries that are subject to the export control policy of the German Federal Government may need additional authorization from the German Federal Office Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA) before they are allowed to use our HPC systems.

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