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Office of High Performance Computing and Communications

As of March 2019, NLM has retired the OHPCC Branch. Information is presented here for historical purposes.

The Office of High Performance Computing and Communications (OHPCC) is the focal point for NLM’s and LHNCBC’s high performance computing and communications research and development activities. It conducts R&D in advanced computing and communications technologies and the application of these technologies to biomedical research and communications.


OHPCC’s history begins with the 1992 creation of the National Coordination Office for High Performance Computing and Communications (NCO/HPCC). The NCO was established to implement the requirements of the High-Performance Computing Act of 1991 (Public Law 102-194), whose goal was and is to sustain and extend U.S. leadership in all advanced areas of computing, networking, software, and information technologies. The law’s requirements include coordinating the HPCC R&D efforts of what were then eight Federal science and technology research agencies – DARPA, DOE, EPA, NASA, NIST, NLM, NOAA, and NSF – and program and budget planning, implementation, and assessment.

Donald A.B. Lindberg, MD, was appointed by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to serve as NCO Director concurrently with being NLM Director. His leadership was instrumental in establishing the NCO as a model for interagency HPCC R&D cooperation and coordination. He served as NCO Director from September 1992 to March 1995. The NCO moved to National Science Foundation space in Arlington, Virginia, in December 1995.

OHPCC was created in recognition of NLM’s need to continue to plan and conduct R&D in HPCC technologies applicable to biomedicine and health care, and to coordinate this work with the efforts of the HPCC Program and the NCO. To that end Dr. Lindberg established the NLM Office of High Performance Computing and Communications within the Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications.