Allocations of service units (SUs) can be obtained from multiple types of requests: Startup, Research, Education, and Special. Education allocations are the only allowed type of education accounts. The other types of allocations are used for principal investigator (PI) accounts. An account can have multiple types of allocations.
Startup Allocation: automatically deposited during the creation of a new PI account. It is a one-time allocation of 10,000 SUs expiring one year after the initial allocation.
Research Allocation: the main source of allocation for the research activities of Research Computing Center (RCC) users. Research allocations need to be applied for via the RCC website and approved by the Research Allocation Advisory Committee. The committee has the right to deny the request or reduce the amount of requested SUs in the applications.
To request research allocations, a formal written proposal needs to be provided, including several paragraphs describing the background, the content of the research, and computational tasks using the allocations. Applicants also need to provide a reasonable estimate of the amount of SUs that they request. If this is not the applicant's first time applying for research allocations, they must write a summary of the outcomes and achievements of previous allocations at the RCC and list all publications related to them. It is suggested that the application be roughly 2 or 3 pages in length.
Research allocations are audited annually, which means that they do expire. The allocation cycle year goes from October 1st of one year until the same day of the next. All research allocations applied for before September 30th will expire at the end of this day. Users need to submit new proposals for SUs after that.
The RCC provides two types of Research Allocations (type I and II), each with somewhat different policies:
- Research I is for immediate and relatively small allocations and can be applied for any time during the year, with an annual limit of 50K SUs. This means people can submit multiple requests for a Research I allocation every year. However, the overall SUs requested cannot exceed 50K SUs. Note: CPP partners can have their limit raised to 100K SUs. Please note that Research I allocations cannot be rolled over for subsequent years.
- Research II is for relatively large allocations. However, we only accept and approve Research II requests twice a year. The first application period is in September when users can submit a proposal for allocations for the next year's cycle starting on October 1st. It has an upper limit of 1 million SUs (2 million for CPP partners). The other application period is in March when users can submit another proposal as a supplemental request to the first one; these have an upper limit of 500K SUs (1 million for CPP partners), and the supplemental SUs will be available from April 1st. Research II allocations do not roll over from year to year.
Education Allocation: used for a registered course. This can be also applied for via the RCC website. There are no specific limits to the number of SUs, and applications are accepted at any time. Instructors should submit their proposals before the start of the course, with a description of the course and a reasonable estimate of how many SUs are needed. Education allocations expire when the associated course has finished.
Special Allocation: a rarely used type for any special cases that don’t fit any types above. Special allocation requests are accepted at any time.
Additional SUs and storage can be obtained by applying for the appropriate allocation type.