The Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI) was recently selected by the European Commission's Framework Programme 7 (FP7) as the country's National Contact Point (NCP) for Information and Communications Technologies (ICT). This development strengthens ASTI's role as a broker for cooperation between Philippine and European Union researchers and experts in the field of ICT.
ASTI's designation as FP7 NCP for ICT was hastened by its participation in the EU-Southeast Asian Cooperation (SEACOOP) Consortium/project which supports the development of Information Society policy dialogues and strengthening cooperation on ICT research between the ASEAN countries and the European Union.
As an FP7 NCP for ICT, ASTI is expected to provide:
Guidance to local researchers on choosing relevant FP7 thematic priorities and instruments
Advice on administrative procedures and contractual issues
Training and assistance on proposal writing
Dissemination of relevant information and documents (forms, guidelines, manuals etc.)
Assistance in partner search and matching
Local researchers and constituents will benefit through the FP7 Researchers' Workshops, joining as partners to other proposals, and finding the right partners for their project.
Furthermore, as the FP7 NCP for ICT, ASTI is now a partner in Ideal-IST, itself an FP7-supported project. Ideal-IST is an ICT-partner search network supporting transnational cooperation among ICT NCP's in line with the international cooperation strategy of the European Commission. It currently consists of 67 ICT national partners from EU and Non-EU Countries and aims to improve the overall quality of NCP services across partners in the area of ICT. Philippine researchers, through ASTI, will also benefit in this partnership by having access to networking and training within the NCP members, project partner searching, and other external relations relating to project management and on-going project matching.
For more information about NCP, please visit the CORDIS Europa Website. For info on Ideal-IST, you may visit the Ideal-IST Website .

The Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI), in cooperation with the Academia Sinica Grid Computing Center (ASGC) of Taiwan, conducted a workshop on seismic wave propagation application, specifically, SPECFEM3D_GLOBE. With seismologists from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) as participants, it primarily focused on how to use SPECFEM3D_GLOBE, which was installed on the ASTI HPC's Liknayan Cluster. This cluster had been certified as a production machine, and was connected to the Enabling Grids for E-sciencE (EGEE), a European grid initiative. The resource speakers for the workshop were Jim Ho and Jinny Chien of ASGC.

The ASGC was responsible for the SPECFEM3D_GLOBE application running on the EGEE. Ho even said that it was their first training on the said application. ASGC is one of Taiwan's leading high performance computing and communication centers that provides advanced services for Grid Computing.
The first day of the workshop included discussions about the EuAsiaGrid Project, and gLite security and services. It also had hands-on activities on Information System, and Job and Data Management System. The second day involved introduction on Message Passing Interface (MPI) Programming and Seismic Simulation Gateway, and demonstrations of SPECFEM3D_GLOBE. The last day was the continuation of the demonstrations and allotted for urther discussions on the topics presented.

The said workshop was one of ASTI's continuous response to the EuAsiaGrid's objective and work package to provide support for scientific communities using Grid applications. The project was concluded on June of this year with successful results, and a follow-up project is already in the works. This workshop and training on SPECFEM3D_GLOBE is one of the activities that would provide support to succeeding initiatives.

The workshop was held at the ASTI Training Room from November 10-12.