CERN servers go to Mexico

On Wednesday, 26 August, 384 servers from the CERN Computing Centre were donated to the Faculty of Science in Physics and Mathematics (FCFM) and the Mesoamerican Centre for Theoretical Physics (MCTP) at the University of Chiapas, Mexico.


CERN’s Director-General, Rolf Heuer, met the Mexican representatives in an official ceremony in Building 133, where the servers were prepared for shipment. From left to right: Frédéric Hemmer, CERN IT Department Head; Raúl Heredia Acosta, Deputy Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations and International Organizations in Geneva; Jorge Castro-Valle Kuehne, Ambassador of Mexico to the Swiss Confederation and the Principality of Liechtenstein; Rolf Heuer, CERN Director-General; Luis Roberto Flores Castillo, President of the Swiss Chapter of the Global Network of Qualified Mexicans Abroad; Virginia Romero Tellez, Coordinator of Institutional Relations of the Swiss Chapter of the Global Network of Qualified Mexicans Abroad; José Salicio-Diez, CERN's Advisor to the Office for International Relationship for Latin America; Flavio Costa, Coordinator within the CERN IT department of the donation of servers.


The periodic replacement of computer equipment that no longer meets CERN’s highly specific requirements is necessary. However, the old equipment can still be used effectively in less demanding environments, including universities and scientific institutes around the world. Since 2012, no less than 1,533 servers and 103 switches have been donated this way to scientific or educational projects.

This time, in addition to the servers, 24 network switches and 26 racks have been donated by CERN to Mexico. Once at their destination, these servers – some of which are to be used for data processing while others are for data storage  will be used by the Mexican institutes for a variety of scientific and educational projects in the fields of physics, mathematics, energy and environmental sciences. The computing equipment will also be available to the large community of users in Central America, with whom the FCFM and MCTP share scientific activity. Students of different grades in Chiapas and the surrounding region will also benefit from the increased computing capacity of the Mexican institutes thanks to their dedicated distance-learning programmes and outreach activities.

In the process leading up to this donation, the interaction between CERN and the Mexican institutions was coordinated by the Swiss Chapter of the Global Network of Qualified Mexicans Abroad; this organisation actively seeks to create links between Mexican and Swiss scientists, students and institutes as one of its pillars. In Chiapas, the Rotary Club of Oriente de Tuxtla has provided support in monitoring the donation process, including the installation and operation of the acquired equipment.

by Stefania Pandolfi