Cost Sharing Scientific Computing

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The IT services at the Carl von Ossietzky University operate the central high-performance compute (HPC) cluster CARL, which can be used by all members of the university for research and teaching. The users are supported (e.g. by expert advice, software installations, HPC courses) by Scientific Computing, a division in the BI in the School V - Mathematics and Natural Sciences.

The use of the HPC cluster, and with it the need for support, has increased steadily in recent years. In order to do justice to this development, Scientific Computing was permanently expanded with the position of a software administrator from 1 June 2018.

The financing of this additional position was discussed in the Scientific Computing Advisory Board and in the Faculty Council of the FK V and was decided with the result that the financing will be proportionally provided by the Faculties II, V and VI (as well as by study quality funds). In addition, a small part of the personnel costs amounting to 16,000€ is to be borne by the institutes/departments using the system. This usage fee will be charged annually from 1 January 2019.


Fee Rank Hours of Computing Time Charge
Base Fee I > 2,500 Core Hours 150 €
Base Fee II > 25,000 Core Hours 400 €
Base Fee III > 250,000 Core Hours 800 €
Base Fee IV > 2,500,000 Core Hours 1,200 €
Usage-Dependent Fee
(16,000€ − Σ of all Basic Fees) ∙ Core Hours by Work Group


In one year the cluster will have a total computing time of 60 million computing hours (core hours). Two research groups in the Institute X needed 2 and 3 million core hours respectively. Correspondingly, basic fees of 800€ and 1,200€ are charged.
If in addition the sum of all basic fees amounts to 15.000€ (i.e. 1,000€ too little), then the research groups have to pay an additional usage-dependent share of 33.33€ or 50.00€ (3.33% or 5%, respectively from 1.000€). The institute will, therefore, be charged a total of 2083.33€. (broken down according to the research groups).

Additional Information

The cost-sharing model and procedures were announced by e-mail on October, 23rd, 2018 (see PDF in German).

The HPC cluster usage and other information relevant for the cost-sharing can be obtained with the tools described in the section Managing your Group.

Further information can be found in this announcement paper (in german): hpc_costs.pdf