The Vermont Advanced Computing Core (VACC) is a core research facility offering research computing services to UVM faculty, staff and students, as well as to strategic partners in academia, government and businesses statewide. The VACC was made possible by grants from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) with strong support from U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy and Vermont EPSCoR.
VACC's mission includes strategic support in three key areas:
- advancing high-impact, multidisciplinary research efforts
- promoting advanced computing education and outreach across disciplines
- investing in next-generation, innovative and sustainable high-performance computing infrastructure models
Use of the VACC infrastructure also prepares research students and faculty for project access to larger advanced computing infrastructures of the 21st century, including national grid architectures and the future of cloud computing.
The VACC's efforts are coordinated with priority initiatives in the Office of the Vice President for Research and the Graduate College, including an investment in faculty in the Complex Systems Center. The Vice President for Research and Dean of the Graduate College Domenico Grasso and Senior Director of Research and Strategic Initiatives Melody Brown Burkins (VACC Acting Director) manage the program, expanding its outreach and advancing strategic partnerships. The VACC works closely with UVM Enterprise Technology Services (ETS) to ensure computing systems run smoothly and coordinate with NASA to advance complementary research programs.
In 2003, with early support from NASA and Senator Patrick Leahy, UVM undertook a campus-wide assessment of current needs and future directions for high-performance computing (HPC) in its research enterprise. The effort included discussions with an expert panel from the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) as well as UVM research leadership and faculty members across disciplines.
In the fall of 2008, UVM was proud to announce the growth of its VACC program to include a core of VACC Visiting Faculty Fellows, multiple, ongoing and interdisciplinary research projects in climate science, robotics, health systems and complex heat transfer, and the achievement of a full 7.1 teraflop operational capacity in its IBM e1350 computing cluster, the Bluemoon.