Visit CSC!

HPC-Europa experience at CSC

The Finnish CSC - IT Center for Science has been an active partner in all previous HPC-Europa programmes as well as in multiple other EU projects. CSC provides visitors with computational resources and support. Similarly, the Finnish researchers can apply for a visit to any of 8 HPC-Europa3 partners’ centres in Europe.

Who we are

We are an ICT expert center and provide related services for research, education, culture, public administration and enterprises. We have over 400 employees of more than 10 different nationalities. Our offices are located in Espoo's Keilaniemi business area (just 8 km west of the Helsinki City Centre, 10 minutes by metro). The data center is in the Renforsin Ranta business park in Kajaani, where CSC’s datacentre operates.


Photos: Thinkstock    

Besides the national context, we are actively working towards sustainable distributed European e-Infrastructure through participation in a number of EC funded initiatives. For example, in 2019 the consortium led by CSC won the EuroHPC bid to host the biggest supercomputer so far in Europe to be hosted in Finland.

What we offer to visitors

HPC-Europa3 visitors coming to Finland will get:

  • to stay in Finland at least for 3 –13 weeks;
  • comfortable summer temperatures, snow and northern lights in the winter (if you’re lucky);
  • safe and well-functioning society;
  • a sauna and a lake close by (where ever you are);
  • to join and to collaborate with one of the Finnish host-labs, typically research groups in Universities;
  • access to powerful HPC and data facilities;
  • support from CSC’s experts;
  • to participate in training courses given by CSC;
  • personal day-to-day support of CSC’s HPC-Europa3 local team, which deals with all your logistical, administrative and financial matters before, during and after your visit;
  • extensive CSC TA Visitor Guide, with in-depth information and all practicalities of your visit to Finland.       

Visit Finland

You may be wondering what Finland is like. It’s a cool place - in the nice sense of the word. Not too cold in the winter and not too hot in the summer. A lot of nature and you don’t need to learn Finnish to get by. Some introductory material in HERE.  

The accommodation during the visit should be arranged in cooperation between the visitor and his/her research group (host). Unfortunately, CSC does not have guest houses for the visitors. The hosts usually have possibility to reserve university’s guest houses or similar hotels for you. Also, renting an apartment, e.g. via airbnb is a good option, especially for longer visits.

The capital area is compact with lots of potential hosts. Moving around with public transport or in the summer with city-bikes is convenient (costs covered). Universities outside the capital area will give an even better access to nature.

Host-Labs network

CSC serves all Finnish universities and their research groups, and we have about 4000 active users of our computational infrastructure. In addition to universities, also research institutes and small and medium sized enterprises are valid hosts for visitors. CSC has very close customer contacts to the academia and many groups have expressed their support for the HPC-Europa projects. You are welcome to use your existing contacts in Finland or ask CSC for assistance in finding other suitable hosts.

A typical visitor will spend most of the visit at a Finnish research group. An introductory visit to CSC is organized at the start. The Finnish host assists you scientifically and technically and CSC provides you with helpdesk service and expert and administrative support during the visit.

Resources for visitors

CSC’s computing platforms have just been updated. They include systems for high-performance and high-throughput computing, cloud computing, data analysis and a quantum learning machine. In September 2019 the first of the new platforms, BullSequana X400 called Puhti with a theoretical peak performance of 1.8 Petaflops, was opened for researchers. In May 2020 Kvasi, the quantum learning machine was opened, and in August 2020 the massively parallel supercomputer Mahti. In 2021 the biggest EuroHPC pre-exascale supercomputer LUMI, will be installed in Kajaani and become available for researchers.
The computational resources can serve diverse needs from very large memory jobs, via GPU workloads to massively parallel jobs. In addition to hundreds 40 core compute nodes with 192GB-1.5TB of memory, Puhti has 80 nodes each equipped with four V100 GPGPUs and fast NVMe local disk. The resources also include OpenStack cloud capacity, an OpenShift powered container cloud and a CEPH based object storage, and solutions for sharing data.

CSC offers a layer of applications tuned to work seamlessly in the CSC environment. CSC provides a selection of about 200 scientific software and 50 databases. The supported applications include both public domain codes and commercially licensed software. From the latter, CSC provides, e.g., Schrödinger Maestro, DiscoveryStudio and MaterialsStudio, Ansys and Abaqus packages for computational engineering, Gaussian and Turbomole for quantum chemistry, the mathematical software Matlab, and ArcGIS geographical information system. These are supplemented with support services, such as training, maintenance and courses. Here is the full information on the HPC infrastructure services at CSC to help you to choose resources for your approved project. 

Naturally, you can also access CSC training program. Please have a look at the CSC’s Calendar for courses and events and register on-line for any courses taking place during your visit. 

Visitors’ support

The CSC HPC-Europa3 team deals the visitor with all logistical, administrative, research, technical and financial matters.

Accepted visitors will receive an e-mail notification and the CSC’s TA Visitor Guide with instructions on how to organize your visit. We will be always happy to help you during your visit preparations. Two weeks before your visit we also will send you instructions on how to get a user account on CSC’s computing servers. 

Visitors from Finland

Finland-based researchers may also apply for HPC-Europa3 visits to research institutes associated with any of the other 8 HPC centres offering TA visits. Finnish visitors have access to the HPC facilities at the associated HPC-Europa3 partner site and receive consultancy and support from staff there.

Why host an HPC-Europa3 visit?

Researchers from any university in Finland, a research institute or an SME can host an HPC-Europa3 visitor.

HPC-Europa3 provides an excellent opportunity for hosts to establish links with European research groups outside Finland with related research interests or strengthen existing links. Visits aim at joint publications started during the visit, and have resulted in reciprocal visits, longer-term collaborations, e.g. through joint research grants and as new jobs.

If you sign up as a host, please click here

Useful links

Contact us

In general questions please contact the European coordinators of HPC-Europa3 Transnational Access Programme at staff (at) hpc-europa.org.

For questions and other topics related to visiting Finland under HPC-Europa3 please contact CSC's HPC-Europa3 support hotline: hpc-europa (at) csc.fi

HPC-Europa3, Local Project Manager and Member of the Management Board, CSC
Atte Sillanpää
hpc-europa (at) csc.fi

HPC-Europa3 Local TA Visit Coordinator, CSC
Marina Bouianov
hpc-europa (at) csc.fi