About the Ohio Supercomputer Center

Our Mission

At the Ohio Supercomputer Center, our duty is to empower our clients, partner strategically to develop new research and business opportunities, and lead Ohio's knowledge economy.Five OSC staff members standing and smiling.

The Ohio Supercomputer Center empowers a wide array of groundbreaking innovation and economic development activities in the fields of bioscience, advanced materials, data exploitation and other areas of state focus by providing a powerful high performance computing, research and educational cyberinfrastructure for a diverse statewide/regional constituency.

The Ohio Supercomputer Center partners strategically with Ohio researchers — especially following the 2002 establishment of a focused research support program — in developing competitive, collaborative proposals to regional, national, and international funding organizations to solve some of the world's most challenging scientific and engineering problems.

The Ohio Supercomputer Center leads strategic research activities of vital interest to the State of Ohio, the nation and the world community, leveraging the exceptional skills and knowledge of an in-house research staff specializing in the fields of supercomputing, computational science, data management, biomedical applications and a host of emerging disciplines.

Our Strategic Vision - Full Strategic Vision Document [pdf]

The Ohio Supercomputer Center is a statewide resource that provides supercomputing services and computational science expertise to Ohio university researchers as well as Ohio industries. OSC has provided these services for over twenty years, and in fiscal year 2011 we estimate that Ohio researchers that use OSC have won over $140M of research funding for Ohio — a return on investment of 24:1.

Our vision is to be a national center that drives research and development in computational science and the applications of supercomputing, and thus be a strategic transformative force behind Ohio’s new economy: by empowering Ohio researchers to new innovations and discoveries that will lead to new products, businesses and services; by partnering with Ohio industries to use supercomputing and computational science as a competitive force; and, in collaboration with Ohio’s colleges and universities, in educating Ohio’s workforce in the key skills required for future jobs. The plan to realize our vision leverages the significant investments that have already been made by the Third Frontier Program. Specifically, the plan concentrates on the key areas of Advanced Materials, Biosciences and Energy/Environment and requires investments for additional technical capabilities, expertise to assist industrial clients, and staff to initiate new workforce training activities. In combination with existing programs across the state in these areas, these investments can be leveraged to position Ohio as the world leader, serving as an attractor for the brightest minds and most innovative firms to move to the state.

What We Do

Since 1987, OSC has been providing our clients services in four areas, or functions:

Supercomputing. OSC provides the computational power and storage that scientists need to meet their research goals.  Whether researchers need to harness the incredible power of a parallel processor cluster to better understand deep space, a vector processor machine to do weather modeling, or a mid-size shared memory processor system to model the human heart, OSC has the hardware and software solutions to meet their needs.

Research. A staff of high performance computing and networking research experts maintain active research programs in HPC and Networking, Homeland Security and Defense, Environmental Sciences, Engineering and Life Sciences. Our goals are to lead science and engineering research efforts, assist researchers with custom needs and collaborate with regional, national and international researchers in groundbreaking initiatives.

Education. OSC has a national reputation for its training and education programs. Staff teach faculty and student researchers through scientific computing workshops, one-on-one classes, and web-based portal training. Ohio students gain exposure to the world of high performance computing and networking during our annual summer institutes for young women in middle school and for junior and senior high school students. And, the statewide, virtual Ralph Regula School of Computational Science coordinates computational science and engineering education activities for all levels of learning.

Cyberinfrastructure. The Ohio Supercomputer Center’s cyberinfrastructure and software development researchers provide the user community with various high performance computing software options. This variety enables researchers to select parallel computing languages they most prefer, and just as important, it creates a test bed for exploring these systems. By taking a holistic approach to generating efficient supercomputing applications for researchers, the Center’s cyberinfrastructure and software development research capitalizes on all the components within the cycle of innovation — development, experimentation, and analysis - and continuously improves the services provided.

Our Affiliations

OSC and its staff members are active at the executive level or on committees with a variety of organizations, including:

American Distance Education Consortium (ADEC), an international consortium of state and land grant institutions providing economic distance education programs and services via the latest and most appropriate information technologies.

Blue Waters petascale computing system is revolutionizing science and engineering research and education.

Center for Applied Scientific Computing (CASC), which conducts collaborative scientific investigations that require the power of high performance computers and the efficiency of modern computational methods.

Council on Competitiveness, the only group of corporate CEOs, university presidents and labor leaders committed to the future prosperity of all Americans and enhanced U.S. competitiveness in the global economy.

Engaging People in Cyberinfrastructure (EPIC), a collaboration led by the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Boston University that builds human capacity by creating awareness of the opportunities afforded through cyberinfrastructure and by educating and training a diverse group of people in all stages of life, from K-12 to professional practice, to fully participate in the cyberinfrastructure community as developers, users, and leaders.

Great Lakes Consortium for Petascale Computation, a collaboration among colleges, universities, national research laboratories, and other educational institutions. The consortium facilitates the widespread and effective use of petascale computing, through the development of new computing software, applications, and technologies.

Our History

Visit OSC and OARnet's 25th Anniversary pages!

The Ohio Supercomputer Center was established by the Ohio Board of Regents in 1987 as a statewide resource designated to place Ohio's research universities and private industry in the forefront of computational research. Today, OSC is a fully scalable center with mid-range machines to match those found at the NSF centers and national labs.

Also in 1987, the OSC networking initiative — known today as OARnet — provided the first network access to the Center’s first Cray supercomputer. At the time, network access was available only within Columbus boundaries. OARnet now provides Internet access to  about two million Ohioans, including people at colleges, universities, K-12 schools, public broadcasting stations, academic medical centers and governments offices.

During its first ten years, OSC focused primarily on providing high quality computing and networking services to its users. More recently, OSC has expanded its role to provide services to national high performance computing and networking groups with extensive research and education resources.

But OSC's real history, and future, lies with its clients. As a leader in computing and networking, OSC is a vital resource for Ohio's students, professors, scientists and engineers. The Statewide Users Group (SUG), composed of faculty members from colleges and universities across Ohio, guides OSC's user-related and technical operations. The Research Advisory Committee and Production Advisory committees were established in 2004, expanding the representation at OSC to include industrial and research organizations.

Past and present, OSC serves as a leading innovator and enabler for our technology-based world. OSC's research and development initiatives position Ohio to become the education and technology state of the future.