The former Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation founded the RES in July 2006 as a response to the need of the Spanish scientific community for increased computation capacity and access to intensive calculation resources, considering the supercomputing resources as a decisive asset for the scientific and technological development of the country. The RES consists of a distributed virtual infrastructure of supercomputers located in different sites, each of which contributes to the total processing power available to users of different R&D groups. Currently, the supercomputers are located in Extremadura (Extremadura Center for Research, Technological Innovation and Supercomputing), the Canary Islands (Instituto Astrofísico de Canarias), Castilla y León (Castilla y León Supercomputing Center), the Universities of Cantabria, Autónoma de Madrid, Málaga, Valencia and Zaragoza, CESGA, and CSUC, with the coordinating body being the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC-CNS). The RES not only provides supercomputing resources, it also offers service of technical support to users as well as specific training. Moreover it organizes users’ meetings and scientific seminars. The goal of these actions is to improve the efficient usage of the resources and expand the use of supercomputing to all the research areas.
The SCBI of the UMA, located in the technological park of Andalusia, hosts the Picasso computer which began operations in February 1997, serving since then to the scientific community. In 2007 there was a turning point, when the University complemented the supercomputing facilities with bioinformatics tools and experts. The services offered by the SCBI are as follows: access to High Performance Computers, assistance and advice on the use of scientific applications and programming, training courses for users, software adapted to the researchers needs and specialized support for bioinformatics data analysis. Picasso stands out because of its seven shared memory computers, each with 2TB of RAM and 80 cores, which enable dealing with problems that would be impossible to solve with a classical cluster architecture. It also has 89 computers, with different technologies, so each researcher can use seamlessly, through a queue system, the one most suitable for each problem. Picasso provides 27% of its resources to the RES.