N8 High Performance Computing (N8 HPC) provided academic and industry researchers with access to a high performance computing facility alongside support and expertise to make the most of the opportunities provided by this technology.

Based at the University of Leeds and run jointly with the University of Manchester and all N8 partners, the £3.25m facility offered high performance computing on a scale which previously had not been readily available to researchers in the North. N8 HPC operated Polaris, which was capable of a peak performance of 110 trillion operations per second.



In addition to providing a shared facility for academic research the N8 HPC aimed to:

  • seed engagement between industry and academia around research using e-infrastructure
  • develop skills in the use of e-infrastructure across the N8 partnership
  • share the asset of skills and equipment across the N8 partnership via the facilitation of networks of people


Industrial Collaboration

To facilitate the seeding of engagement between industry and academia the N8 HPC team used the existing business engagement networks at the N8 partner sites to facilitate research and collaboration between researchers based at the N8 universities and industrial collaborators.
N8 HPC worked with industry regardless of high performance computing experience. Training and skills development was available to enable industries to use high performance computing for the first time or to expand on current usage.


N8 HPC worked effectively with industry to increase knowledge and productivity:

  • 90 companies have worked with N8 academics using N8 HPC for collaborative academic research – 40% of projects run have involved industrial collaboration.
    • Industrial engagement and collaboration has resulted in 32 industry related PhD studentships
    • N8 HPC has featured in 76 grant applications worth over £60m
    • 377 research papers published have referenced use of N8 HPC


More Details

N8 HPC ran from 2013-2018, offering a shared ‘Tier 2’ HPC facility underpinning world-class research, enabling collaborations between the member institutions of the N8 Research Partnership and creating the opportunity to engage more effectively with business and the community.


N8 HPC has now become the N8 Centre of Excellence in Computationally Intensive Research (N8 CIR).