PACE ICE (Instructional Cluster Environment) for education

What's ICE (Instructional cluster environment)?

In 2018, PACE initiated a project called “Instructional Cluster Environment (ICE)” to build instructional clusters to support educational efforts per a high demand campus-wide. These resources offer an educational environment that’s identical to production clusters, and expected to provide thousands of grad/undergrad students with ample opportunities to gain first-hand scientific computing experience including HPC and GPU programming each year. Furthermore, the entire PACE scientific software repository is made accessible to all ICE students, providing an education environment that mirrors production research clusters in every aspect.

In addition to credit-bearing courses, ICE enables PACE team to develop or host hands-on tutorials and workshops to help GT researchers and students improve their computational skills, in accordance with GT’s strategic plan that states “In addition to traditional classroom experiences, we will explore the possibility of enabling faculty, students and staff to interact in venues such as short courses and workshops where a shared culture of innovation, collaboration and leadership can evolve.”

Currently there are two ICE clusters with important differences:

  • PACE-ICE: Campus-wide service funded by PACE, requires application process. Funded partly by a Technology fee grant and partly PACE budget.
  • COC-ICE: COC specific service for COC classes and those that are cross listed with this department. Funded by Technology fee grant by COC.


How to apply to use ICE for your classes


* If you are from a department other than COC: please fill out this form to send an application


* If you are teaching a COC class, or if your class is cross listed with this department: please directly contact David Mercer (

All GT faculty are potentially eligible for using ICE resources for their classes, but the application mechanism is necessary to ensure fair use of limited resources. Once the applications are collected, PACE identifies which classes can be supported and how much resources to allocate for each department (not class). The decision is communicated to departments in advance to schedule orientation sessions and completing queue configurations.


IMPORTANT DATES for Fall 2019 (subject to change):

August 7, 2019:  Application deadline

Note: This is not a hard deadline, but we may not be able to guarantee availability of resources on the first day of classes for later applications.

August 12, 2019:  Announcement of approved classes
August 12, 2019 -> September 9, 2019:  Orientation/Training for Professors/TAs, scheduled depending on availability
(the first day of classes is August 19, 2019)


ICE resources

(last update: Dec 2018)



- 17 CPU nodes, each with 28cores and 128GB nodes

- 5 GPU nodes, each with 8 cores, 128GB and a single P100 GPU.

- 10GB per user storage, backed up daily.



- 23 CPU nodes, each with 28 cores and 128GB nodes

-12 GPU nodes, each with 8 cores, 128GB and a single P100 GPU.

- 14 GPU nodes, each with 12 cores, 128GB and dual Tesla K40 GPUs.

- 10GB per user strorage, backed up daily.