Getting Started

Who can use ARSC?

ARSC is a resource of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, available to all University of Alaska faculty, staff and students.  Utilization by non-UA affiliates must either be sponsored by a UA faculty or staff member, or via a for-fee agreement with ARSC.

How do I get access to ARSC resources?

Please visit our account application page.

How can ARSC help me?

ARSC maintains a set of systems and software which are utilized for research, creativity and discovery.  ARSC personnel can assist in program compilation and execution.  In-depth training is offered regularly to help guide creation of new programs, utilization of existing programs, preparation of input data, and analysis of results.

Are ARSC's systems difficult to use?

It can be challenging to effectively utilize supercomputers, enterprise storage systems, and the other high-end facilities that ARSC provides.  Most interaction with systems is via the Unix/Linux command line, and most computational jobs are submitted to a batch queue to run. This is different than the point-and-click interactive experience of modern personal computers and mobile devices.

Scientists and engineers (including students) utilize high performance computing systems when their needs exceed what is available on smaller systems.  For some people's computational questions, existing software can be used to ask scientific questions, analyze computational outcomes, and ccnduct computationally-based experiments.  For other questions, software needs to be written in order to get satisfactory results.

The people of ARSC are experts at helping to identify software, analysis tools, and programming techniques that will make ARSC's facilities useful for science and engineering research and discovery.  It is then up to the end users -- the students, faculty and staff who utilize ARSC systems -- to put the facilities to work.

Are my needs well-suited for ARSC?

If your research is computationally-based, and you need more computing power than is available in your lab or office: yes.

If you have large data: yes.

If you need to make your research data available to the world via a Web site or similar means: yes, as long as you are able to manage and maintain the Web services and software. See our Web resources information.

If you have no active affiliation with a UA faculty member or research group: yes, however you will be required to set up a service purchasing contract. In that case, contact us.

If you are able to utilize Linux/Unix-based systems to configure and run programs, including writing and compiling your own programs as needed: yes.

If you primarily need to utilize Windows-based software for your research: probably not, but consider a training course.  Get in touch if you need guidance.

What does it cost?

ARSC resources are freely available to the UA community.  An allocation process is utilized to help ensure adequate computational and storage capabilities are available.

Users who have external funding (i.e., grants and contracts) for work that relies on ARSC are asked to consider including some funding for ARSC.  Typically, this is done by including some time for ARSC personnel in the funding proposal.  UAF's unit-level grant officers are familiar with this process.  Contact us if additional guidance is needed.

ARSC actively seeks external funding to enhance resources available to the University.  Collaborators, and ideas for potential grantseeking, are always welcome!

In service to the State of Alaska, ARSC can provide services under a reciprocal services agreement (RSA) to any state office or agency. Contact us to request our current rate sheet.

For-fee utilization of ARSC resources and personnel is available. Pricing is generally competitive with pricing for cloud and commercial high performance computing and storage.  Contact us to request our current rate sheet.

What other information is available to help me to get started?

Please visit our New User's Guide

Back to Top