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Competition launched to produce a design for the front of HECToR

13 June 2011

To mark the unveiling of the third phase of HECToR - the UK's largest, fastest and most powerful supercomputer - in summer 2011, the Research Councils are launching a competition to produce a design for the front of the computer. The competition is open to 11-16 year olds and the winning entry will be turned, by professional designers, into a room-sized picture spanning the front panels of the HECToR supercomputer. The winner(s) will also receive a contribution towards travel costs to attend the launch ceremony in Edinburgh in 2012 when the artwork will be unveiled as well as a wall plaque for their school/science club/STEM club to mark their contribution to the understanding of science in the UK. Second and third prizes of £50 and £30 of Amazon vouchers are also available.

HECToR occupies an area the size of two tennis courts and has a memory of 80 Terabytes equivalent to 49,000 iPod Nanos! HECToR allows researchers to tackle some of today's biggest scientific and engineering challenges. This might be forecasting climate change, designing new life-saving drugs, constructing safer aircrafts, predicting natural disasters or understanding how complex biological systems work and develop.

The closing date for entries is 5pm on Friday 8 July. For further details, including full terms and conditions, design specifications and to get a copy of the entry form, please e-mail:

HECToR is owned by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC), and is located within the University of Edinburgh.


BBSRC Media Office

tel: 01793 414694