[hpc-announce] Call for Proposals: Intel-Altera Heterogeneous Architecture Research Platform (HARP) Program

Carter, Nicholas P nicholas.p.carter at intel.com
Fri Jan 23 14:15:15 CST 2015

(apologies if you receive multiple copies of this announcement)

Call for Proposals (CFP): Intel-Altera Heterogeneous Architecture Research Platform (HARP) Program

Intel® Corporation and Altera® Corporation are pleased to announce the Heterogeneous Architecture Research Platform (HARP) program, which will provide faculty with computer systems containing Intel microprocessors and an Altera Stratix® V FPGA module that incorporates Intel® QuickAssist Technology in order to spur research in programming tools, operating systems, and innovative applications for accelerator-based computing systems.
In recent years, accelerators and coprocessors have attracted a great deal of interest, but the effort required to program heterogeneous systems has limited their impact.  Current programming tools for these technologies require a great deal of user input to select the portions of an application that should be executed on the coprocessor or accelerator, to manage data transfers between the CPU and the other chip(s), and to tune the application to match the characteristics of the hardware.  Worse yet, performing this work generally results in an application that only performs well on a particular device, with little portability to other systems.
Overcoming this drawback will require research into tools that reduce the amount of effort required to map an application onto a coprocessor or accelerator, operating systems and schedulers that can automatically assign tasks to the most efficient hardware in a heterogeneous system, techniques to make applications portable across different hardware technologies, and innovative applications that demonstrate the potential of heterogeneous systems.  To support and encourage this research, the HARP program is making systems available to researchers that pair a 12-core Intel microprocessor with an Altera Stratix V FPGA module that incorporates Intel QuickAssist Technology.
We plan to build approximately 20 HARP systems to be donated to academic researchers based on responses to this call.  Researchers awarded HARP systems may also qualify for a license to use the Altera Quartus® II Design Software and other Altera software tools free of charge under the terms of the applicable software license and the Altera University Program (details of such program are on the Altera website).  Additionally, researchers awarded HARP systems will be invited to a series of workshops to be held at Intel campuses.  The first workshop, to be held in early 2015, will include tutorials on the Intel QuickAssist Technology, and will give researchers an opportunity to discuss ideas for research using the HARP systems.  Later workshops will allow researchers to present the results of their work and discuss opportunities for technology transfer with Intel researchers and product designers.
Topics of interest to this CFP include, but are not limited to:
-- Compilation techniques to map applications onto accelerator-based systems
-- Operating system and scheduler techniques for accelerator-based systems
-- Techniques to evaluate the suitability of algorithms to different components of a heterogeneous architecture and select the most-effective hardware for different phases of an application
-- Languages and libraries for coprocessors and accelerators, including domain-specific languages
-- Novel accelerator-based applications that demonstrate the potential of the Altera FPGA module with Intel QuickAssist Technology.
-- Studies of algorithm/application remapping/tuning to exploit different aspects of the HARP system
-- Analysis of application characteristics that support mapping onto a heterogeneous platform with coherent communication links
-- Approaches that exploit the benefits of low-latency cache-coherent communication between CPU and accelerators
Eligibility: To be eligible for this program, proposers must be associated with a non-profit college, university, or research institution.  Proposer may not be a resident or national of any of the following countries: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria. U.S. export regulations prohibit the export of goods and services to Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. Therefore, residents or nationals of these countries are not eligible to participate.  Proposer and their institution must not be listed on a denial order published by the U.S. Government or any other applicable Government.  We welcome proposals from individual researchers, groups, and centers.  In most cases, successful proposals will receive a single HARP system, although we will consider exceptions if the specific project requires multiple systems to succeed or the size of the requesting group justifies a multi-system donation.
Proposals will be evaluated on technical merit, potential impact of the proposed research, the proposer's ability to carry out the proposed research, and potential for collaboration with Intel and Altera researchers. Submitters of successful proposals will be expected to sign an agreement not to resell the donated equipment for a period of three years, to make results of their work available to Intel and Altera, and to participate on the program's web forum by giving feedback about their experiences with the HARP platforms.
Each Recipient must acknowledge that donated equipment is subject to export controls under U.S. and other applicable Government laws and regulations.  Recipient will comply with these laws and regulations governing export, re-export, import, transfer, distribution, use, and servicing of donated equipment, and agree to obtain all required Government authorizations.  Recipient will not sell or transfer donated equipment to any entity listed on a denial order published by Government, or a country subject to sanctions, without first obtaining a license or authorization.  Recipient will not use, sell, or transfer donated equipment for purposes prohibited by Government, including, without limitation, the development, design, manufacture, or production of nuclear, missile, chemical or biological weapons, unless authorized by a specific license. For more details on your export obligations, please visit http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/legal/export-compliance.html.
Submission Instructions:  Interested parties should submit a proposal of at most two 8.5"x11" pages, in at least 10pt font, to harp_program at intel.com<mailto:harp_program at intel.com> by midnight Pacific Standard Time (UTC -8) on March 20, 2015.  Proposals should be in PDF format, and should include the name and institution of the individual(s) requesting the platform, a description of the research that will be performed using the platform, and a brief summary of the requestor's relevant previous work, if any.

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