The Australian Government has released its Research Infrastructure Investment Plan in response to the 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap led by Australia's Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel.

The plan includes $6.3 million in 2021-22 to augment the $70 million announced in December 2017 for the commissioning of NCI's next-generation supercomputer.

A further $72.2 million in capital expenditure has been allocated for eResearch projects.

NCI will lead a Scoping Study outlined in the Plan, related to the optimisation of Australia's climate and weather forecasting model, ACCESS.

"Funding will ensure a regular upgrade cycle for maintaining Australia's Tier 1 HPC capability, across both the Pawsey Supercomputing Centre and NCI. In addition, a scoping study will be undertaken to explore opportunities for enhanced capabilities over the horizon.

"Investments will enable critical upgrades to virtual laboratories, research cloud storage and data security, providing a strong basis for the increasing volume of complex computing."

NCI Director Professor Sean Smith says this is an exciting time for supercomputing and big data in Australia.

"NCI welcomes the Government's plan to upgrade Australia's high-performance computing facilities over a longer term period," Professor Smith said.

"This will greatly assist in underwriting NCI's mission to support our research partners across university, government and industry sectors to the highest standard for high performance computing, broadly accessible data archives of national significance and high performance data analytics.