National eResearch to benefit from a $72M funding boost

The Federal Government delivered its response on Tuesday, 15 May, to the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Roadmap, announcing $72M of new National Research Infrastructure (NRI) funding over the next four years for capital investment in eResearch.

This funding is in addition to the already announced investments of $70M each to supercomputing facilities National Computational Infrastructure (NCI, Canberra-based) and Pawsey Supercomputing Centre (Perth-based).
The Government report “Facilities for the Future: Underpinning Australia’s Research and Innovation” highlights the importance of eResearch, with “Digital Data and eResearch” receiving the highest total funding for any of the Roadmap focus areas — a total of $911M over ten years.
The intention of the $72M NRI funding for eResearch is to deliver critical upgrades to the research data storage infrastructure, and support the increasing computing demands across government, research and industry. It will also support the virtual laboratories program.  
Translating this to QCIF, it is expected that funding from the national eResearch program will help to enable regular upgrade cycles for the QRIScloud storage and compute infrastructure over the next four years, building on the funding provided by members and other sources.
QCIF’s partner organisations, including Bioplatforms Australia (BPA), Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network (TERN), Atlas of Living Australia (ALA), Australian Urban Research Infrastructure Network (AURIN), National Imaging Facility (NIF), and the Australian Microscopy and Microanalysis Research Facility (AMMRF), have also received additional capital funding through the NCI program.
Funding has also been set aside for federal scoping studies in areas including “Optimising the value of HPC” and the “National Environmental Prediction System”.

—  By Dr Phil Gurney, QCIF CEO