HPCC Program Summary

HPCC Program Goals

Extend U.S. technological leadership in high performance computing and computer communications.

Provide wide dissemination and application of the technologies to speed the pace of innovation and to improve the national economic competitiveness, national security, education, health care, and the global environment.

Provide key parts of the foundation for the National Information Infrastructure (NII) and demonstrate selected NII applications.

HPCC Agencies

ARPA -- Advanced Research Projects Agency, Department of Defense

DOE -- Department of Energy

ED -- Department of Education

EPA -- Environmental Protection Agency

NASA -- National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NIH -- National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services

NIST -- National Institute of Standards and Technology, Department of Commerce

NOAA -- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce

NSA -- National Security Agency, Department of Defense

NSF -- National Science Foundation

HPCC Program Strategies

Develop, through industrial collaboration, high performance computing systems using scalable parallel designs and technologies capable of sustaining at least one trillion operations per second (teraops) performance on large scientific and engineering problems such as Grand Challenges.

Support all HPCC components by helping to expand and upgrade the Internet.

Develop the networking technology required for deployment of nationwide gigabit speed networks through collaboration with industry.

Demonstrate the productiveness of wide area gigabit networking to support and enhance Grand Challenge applications collaborations.

Demonstrate prototype solutions of Grand Challenge problems that achieve and exploit teraops performance.

Provide and encourage innovation in the use of high performance computing systems and network access technologies for solving Grand Challenge and other applications by establishing collaborations to provide and improve emerging software and algorithms.

Create an infrastructure, including high performance computing research centers, networks, and collaborations that encourage the diffusion and use of high performance computing and communications technologies in U.S. research and industrial applications.

Work with industry to develop information infrastructure technology to support the National Information Infrastructure.

Leverage the HPCC investment by working with industry to implement National Challenge applications.

Enhance computational science as a widely recognized discipline for basic research by establishing nationally recognized and accepted educational programs in computational science at the pre-college, undergraduate, and postgraduate levels.

Increase the number of graduate and postdoctoral fellowships in computer science, computer engineering, computational science and engineering, and informatics, and initiate undergraduate computational sciences scholarships and fellowships.

Overview of the Five HPCC Components

Five integrated components represent the key areas of high performance computing and communications:

HPCS -- High Performance Computing Systems

Extend U.S. technological leadership in high performance computing through the development of scalable computing systems, with associated software, capable of sustaining at least one trillion operations per second (teraops) performance. Scalable parallel and distributed computing systems will be able to support the full range of usage from workstations through the largest scale highest performance systems. Workstations will extend into portable wireless interfaces as technology advances.

NREN -- National Research and Education Network

Extend U.S. technological leadership in computer communications by a program of research and development that advances the leading edge of networking technology and services. NREN will widen the research and education community's network connectivity to high performance computing and research centers and to electronic information resources and libraries. This will accelerate the development and deployment of networking technologies by the telecommunications industry. It includes nationwide prototypes for terrestrial, satellite, wireless, and wireline communications systems, including fiber optics, with common protocol support and applications interfaces.

ASTA -- Advanced Software Technology and Algorithms

Demonstrate prototype solutions to Grand Challenge problems through the development of advanced algorithms and software and the use of HPCC resources. Grand Challenge problems are computationally intensive problems such as forecasting weather, predicting climate, improving environmental monitoring, building more energy-efficient cars and airplanes, designing better drugs, and conducting basic scientific research.

IITA -- Information Infrastructure Technology and Applications

Demonstrate prototype solutions to National Challenge problems using HPCC enabling technologies. National Challenges are informationally intensive applications such as education and lifelong learning, digital libraries, health care, advanced manufacturing, electronic commerce, and environmental monitoring. IITA will support work to integrate technologies, such as services, software, and interfaces, to bring HPCC benefits to the general public. These will be leveraged across the National Challenges, leading to significant economies of scale in the development costs.

BRHR -- Basic Research and Human Resources

Support research, training, and education in computer science, computer engineering, and computational science, and enhance the infrastructure through the addition of HPCC resources. Initiation of pilot projects for K-12 and lifelong learning will support expansion of the NII.

Evaluation Criteria for Agency Participation in the HPCC Program


The research must significantly contribute to the overall goals and strategy of the Federal High Performance Computing and Communications (HPCC) Program, including computing, software, networking, information infrastructure, and basic research, to enable solution of the Grand Challenges and the National Challenges.

Technical/Scientific Merit.

The proposed agency program must be technically/scientifically sound and of high quality, and must be the product of a documented technical/scientific planning and review process.


A clear agency planning process must be evident, and the organization must have demonstrated capability to carry out the program.


The proposed work must be technically/scientifically timely for one or more of the HPCC Program components.


The responsible organization must have established policies, programs, and activities promoting effective technical and scientific connections among government, industry, and academic sectors.


The identified resources must be adequate, represent an appropriate share of the total available HPCC resources (e.g., a balance among program components), promote prospects for joint funding, and address long-term resource implications.

Agency Approval.

The proposed program or activity must have policy-level approval by the submitting agency.

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