Coronavirus: ENEA opens up access to its supercomputer to beat COVID-19


07fotocresco.pngThe research community engaged in tackling the coronavirus will be given free access to one of the most powerful supercomputers in Italy.  CRESCO6, the  infrastructure operating at the ENEA Portici Center, near Naples, can perform up to 1.4 million billion mathematical operations per second. Researchers wishing to access the computational resources on CRESCO HPC systems, can send an email to:

"We believe the supercomputer could make a vital contribution at this crucial moment for our country, in developing treatments, vaccines and improving data processing", Federico Testa, President of ENEA, pointed out. "To date a team of researchers at the University of Florence, coordinated by Professor Piero Procacci, who is working to stop the replication process of COVID-19 and, therefore, the spreading of the virus, has already access to the supercomputer", Testa said.

HPC CRESCO6 is the second most important public computing infrastructure in Italy after Cineca and is playing a key role in testing the effectiveness of the compounds under investigation, providing a reliable estimate of their inhibitory role based on atomistic detail simulations conducted on thousands of parallel processors. After a few days of testing Professor Procacci’s team at the University of Florence has identified at least two compounds with promising characteristics, one of which commercially available. After this first phase of structural development of the compounds obtained, HPC CRESCO6 will be used to find the optimal molecular structure for a possible specific antiviral treatment for COVID-19.

Since 2018 CRESCO6 ranks 420th in the prestigious TOP500 project-which lists the most powerful supercomputers in the world- thanks to the doubling of its processing power, which has reached 1.4 million billion mathematical operations per second (1.4 PetaFlops). The news was announced at the Dallas SuperComputing 2018, the main conference in the field of scientific computing.

Among the fields of application of  CRESCO6 are: development of forecast models on climate change and air pollution with very accurate territorial detail; study of new materials for clean energy production; simulations for managing critical infrastructures; biotechnology; computational chemistry; fluid dynamics for the aerospace sector; development of codes for nuclear fusion.

Researchers from public and private institutions wishing to submit a request to access ENEA computational resources can write to, stating:

Reference contact  person with name and surname, email and telephone;

-  Membership Organization with link to the site;

- Role in the organization;

- Application field: 1) numerical modeling; 2) artificial intelligence; 3) data analysis;

- Scientific description of the project relevant to the COVID-19 emergency;

- Project Reference Framework;

- Computational resources currently used and those requested.

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