High Performance Computing Cluster Overview


Davidson College maintains a small fleet of high performance computing and virtual computing systems, along with supporting infrastructure, that are reserved for academic purposes. Funded through various grants, start-up funds, and capital budget requests, these systems further the academic mission of Davidson College by:

  • Enabling faculty research and furthering the scope of undergraduate research experiences.

  • Improving student educational outcomes by enabling the use of advanced computing infrastructure for instruction, such as JupyterHub and Galaxy Services.

  • Serving as trusted infrastructure supporting and enabling publicly funded Faculty and Student activities.

These systems are divided into departmental groups, but they are managed, run, and wholly owned by Davidson College. Davidson T&I is tasked with operating and supporting these machines in a manner that enables collaboration and technical compatibility. In furtherance of this goal, these groups of machines are all configured to operate together as the Ada Lovelace Research Computing Cluster.

The Ada Lovelace Research Computing Cluster is divided into three groups:

  • MCS Group: 7 nodes, 320 logical cores, 1.5TB of available memory, Infiniband interconnect.

  • Physics Group: 4 nodes, 152 logical cores, 0.9TB of available memory, 8 GPUs of varying age and capability.

  • Davidson Group: 10+1 nodes, 192+32 logical cores, 1.0TB of available memory, 12 Turing based GPUs providing 192GB of video memory, and a high-speed storage appliance providing 50TB of storage. 

All systems use the Davidson Group high-speed storage appliance for shared storage, occupy a network segment/subnet dedicated to research computing, use a common identity provider, and are managed by dedicated research computing staff in T&I.




Contact the Instructional & Research Computing Systems Administrator by emailing ti@davidson.edu.




Faculty research & activities requiring large amounts of computational resources.

Ensuring that Davidson College fulfills management and oversight obligations implicitly made by Grants & Contracts by receiving publicly funded grant awards.

Providing research computing infrastructure supporting advanced instruction in Biology, Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics and other sciences.
✓ In particular, enabling:

  • Genetic sequence alignment and analysis of large amounts of lab-generated genomics data.
  • Deep learning, artificial intelligence, and requisite analysis.
  • Numerical simulations & experimentation.
  • Computational, Modern, and Nuclear Physics laboratory work.
  • Advanced STEM-related honors thesis projects.




→ Contact the Instructional & Research Computing Systems Administrator by emailing ti@davidson.edu.




Direct Secure Shell (SSH) access can be granted to certain nodes from outside the Davidson network upon request. In these cases the systems allowed access must be part of a research computing cluster operated by a university, college, or laboratory with whom the requester has active collaborations.




All machines require two-factor authentication before access is allowed. In addition, Access Control Lists (ACLs) and standard file permissions are enforced on all nodes accessing a share on the storage appliance, with access further restricted by strict network ACLs.



Access to The Davidson Group within the Ada Lovelace Research Computing Cluster is provided free to faculty, students, and collaborators furthering the academic mission of Davidson College.




Academic Computing Diagram


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