The VSC is a consortium of five Flemish universities. This consortium has no legal personality. Its objective is to build a Tier-1 and Tier-2 infrastructure in accordance with the European pyramid model. Staff appointed at five Flemish universities form an integrated team dedicated to training and user support.
For specialized support each institution can appeal to an expert independent of where he or she is employed. The universities also invest in HPC infrastructure and the VSC can appeal to the central services of these institutions. In addition, embedment in an academic environment creates opportunities for cooperation with industrial partners.
The VSC project is managed by the Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO), that receives the necessary financial resources for this task from the Flemish Government.
Operationally, the VSC is controlled by the HPC workgroup consisting of employees from the FWO and HPC coordinators from the various universities. The HPC workgroup meets monthly. During these meetings operational issues are discussed and agreed upon and strategic advice is offered to the Board of Directors of the FWO.
In addition, four committees are involved in the operation of the VSC: the Tier-1 user committee, the Tier-1 evaluation committee, the Industrial Board and the Scientific Advisory Board.
VSC users' committee
The VSC user's committee was established to provide advise on the needs of users and ways to improve the services, including the training of users. The user's committee also plays a role in maintaining contact with users by spreading information about the VSC, making (potential) users aware of the possibilities offered by HPC and organising the annual user day.
These members of the committee are given below in alphabetical order, according to which university they are associated with:
- AUHA: Wouter Herrebout, substitute Bart Partoens
- UAB: Frank De Proft, substitute Wim Thiery
- AUGent: Marie-Françoise Reyniers or Veronique Van Speybroeck
- AU-HL: Sorin Pop, substitute Sofie Thijs
- KU Leuven association: Dirk Roose, substitute Nele Moelans
The members representing the strategic research institutes are
- VIB: Steven Maere, substitute Frederik Coppens
- imec: Wilfried Verachtert
- VITO: Clemens Mensinck, substitute Katrijn Dirix
- Flanders Make: Mark Engels, substitute Paola Campestrini
The representation of the Industrial Board:
- Benny Westaedt, substitute Mia Vanstraelen
This committee evaluates applications for computing time on the Tier-1. Based upon admissibility and other evaluation criteria the committee grants the appropriate computing time.
This committee is composed as follows:
- Walter Lioen, chairman (SURFsara, The Netherlands);
- Nicole Audiffren (Cines, France);
- Isabelle Dupays (IDRIS-CNRS, France);
- Gavin Pringle (EPCC, UK);
- Robin Richardson (UCL, IRIS, UK).
The FWO provides the secretariat of the committee.
The Industrial Board serves as a communication channel between the VSC and the industry in Flanders. The VSC offers a scientific/technical computing infrastructure to the whole Flemish research community and industry. The Industrial Board can facilitate the exchange of ideas and expertise between the knowledge institutions and industry.
The Industrial Board also develops initiatives to inform companies and non-profit institutions about the added value that HPC delivers in the development and optimisation of services and products and promotes the services that the VSC delivers to companies, such as consultancy, research collaboration, training and compute power.
The members are:
- Mia Vanstraelen (IBM)
- Charles Hirsch (Numeca)
- Herman Van der Auweraer (Siemens Industry Software NV)
- Benny Westaedt (Van Havermaet)
- Marc Engels (Flanders Make)
- Marcus Drosson (Umicore)
- Sabien Vulsteke (BASF Agricultural Solutions)
- Birgitta Brys (Worldline)