RichardDr Andrew Richards is Director of Research Computing Services.

Andrew will help to drive the strategic and operational direction for the continued growth of the central service in collaboration with the academic community.

  • High-performance computing, research software engineering, research data processing, and curation, and cloud computing are an essential and underpinning service for a significant proportion of the research which is at the forefront of Imperial’s mission.

For more information visit our Research Computing Services web pages.

Background - Andrew's previous role was Head of Scientific Computing and Data Management for Diamond Light Source Ltd, where he was responsible for the research and experimental IT infrastructure across Diamond and is involved in both internal and external research activities such as the EU funded ExPANDS project and acting as an advisor for the European Spallation Source (ESS) IT infrastructure.

After achieving his PhD in Structural Geology at the University of Keele, and a period collaborating with the oil and gas industry in the development of new software algorithms, Dr Richards moved to the then CCLRC Daresbury Laboratory as a software engineer in grid computing. From 2004 to 2010 he developed and led various grid-related projects, including acting as the Executive Director for the UK National Grid Service.

He was also involved in several EU FP6 and FP7 projects (including the EGEE and EGI Design study projects) related to e-infrastructure development. In 2010 he moved to University College London to develop the inaugural research data service, before moving to the University of Oxford in 2011 where he headed up the universities’ central HPC service.

Imperial Value: Collaboration

My whole career has been about collaboration across not just research in one institute but across institutional boundaries. I have worked on national and international research projects and I sit on the technical advisory panel for the European Spallation Source (ESS) in Sweden, so this is why I value collaboration in everything I do.

Objectives for RCS

  • Research Computing Services (RCS) responsible for the oversight and management of our research capabilities across College.  
  • This includes stakeholder management, demand management, oversight of the Research Computing Services and associated High Performance Computing platforms, Research Data Store and the Research Software Engineering teams.  
  • The RCS service has been in existence since 2005 and is used by more than 4000 members of our research community offering mainly, batch/ noninteractive compute for non-personally-identifiable data, Interactive compute – terminal, Jupyter and Rstudio and also is “Free-at-the-point of use” with expedited access (facility charge-back). RCS is funded by the college and has secured 15M of funding between 2021-2025 to expand capacity locally.

    See our Roadmap for The RCS strategic objectives.