ARCHER is the UK National Supercomputing Service. It allows researchers to run calculations and simulations that require a large number of processing cores working in parallel. The computer demands for such simulations far exceed the computer power typically available to an institution like ours (e.g. a local cluster). ARCHER allows us to run ocean and coupled ocean-atmosphere models that are at the cutting edge of the field. Generally, facilities like ARCHER enable the UK to be (and to remain) at the forefront of environmental and climate research. To maintain that position it is crucial that HPC systems like ARCHER are expanded at regular intervals. For example in Europe, there is likely to be a pre-exascale HPC system by 2021 with full exascale by about 2023 (exascale means a peak performance exceeding 10^18 floating point operation per second). Future upgrades/replacement and expansion of ARCHER will be needed if The UK is not to fall too far behind the curve on this.
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