Time on Rivanna is allocated as Service Units (SUs). One SU corresponds to one core-hour. Multiple SUs make up what is called an allocation (e.g., a new allocation = 1M SUs). Allocations are managed through Grouper (requires VPN connection) groups that should be created by Principal Investigators (PIs) before they submit an allocation request.

All UVA faculty, staff, and postdoctoral associates are considered PIs and therefore eligible for an allocation on Rivanna. Students—both graduate and undergraduate—cannot request allocations, but they are allowed to use Rivanna as members of a Grouper group controlled by a PI. The same applies to researchers with sponsored accounts.

Eligibility and Account Creation

University of Virginia tenure stream and academic general faculty, research faculty, research scientists, and postdoctoral associates may request any type of allocation. The different types of allocations are explained below. UVA graduate and undergraduate students are not permitted to request allocations—this must be done by their faculty advisor[s]. Researchers with sponsored accounts are also prohibited from requesting allocations, but they may use Rivanna as members of a Grouper account controlled by a PI. UVA staff may request allocations, but are required to provide a detailed project proposal with each request.

Each PI should create his/her own Grouper group using the ITS Group Management Service. New groups will require two owners who hold active roles at UVA, as well as a third departmental owner. The PI may designate one or more group administrators but must remain a member of the group. Collaborators with UVA Eservices accounts, regardless of status, can be added to the Grouper group once it has been created. (Collaborators outside of UVA must request a temporary, sponsored Eservices account.) Grouper group names should consist of lowercase letters, digits, or underscores only and must begin with a letter. Please do not use spaces in the group name.

Each PI is ultimately responsible for managing the roster of users in his/her group although PIs may delegate day-to-day management to one or more other members. When users are added or deleted, accounts are automatically created. Group owners will be required to perform an annual attestation of group membership. If group owners do not complete attesting to the validity of their group, the members will be automatically removed from the group.

Note that If you need to set up a new group or modify a group that was created after November 28th, 2023, go to Grouper. To manage groups created before November 28th, 2023, visit the legacy MyGroups portal.

Note for PI’s creating a new Grouper group:

  • Specify “This group will be used for Rivanna access” in the description section of the Service Now request form to expedite group creation.

  • You will need to add yourself as a member to the group in order for us to fulfill any allocation request related to this group.


Allocation Pricing

Type SU Limits Cost SU Lifetime
Standard None Free 12 months
Purchased None $0.01 Forever
Instructional 100,000 Free 2 weeks after last teaching session

Allocation Types

Standard Allocations

Standard allocations require a brief summary of the research project along with an explanation of the computations to be performed. Standard allocations must be renewed annually along with a synopsis of results from the original allocation. There cannot be more than 1 PI per Grouper group. Standard allocations expire 12 months after they are disbursed.

Available to: Faculty and post-docs using Rivanna for research.


Allocation Purchases

Time on Rivanna can also be purchased using an FDM. Purchasers are given a higher priority in the queue and their SUs never expire.

Available to: Faculty and postdocs with grants; researchers who need priority access and premium service.


Instructional Allocations

Instructional allocations provide limited access to Rivanna and are available to UVA instructors who are teaching a class or leading a training session. Faculty who wish to request an instructional allocation should choose a Grouper account name using the class rubric, e.g. cs5014. Instructional allocations come with 1TB of temporary project storage space. Class data and service units will be automatically purged 2 weeks after the class ends unless the instructor requests an extension. Instructors are required to submit a fresh instructional allocation request—either a new request or a renewal request—at the start of each semester. Read the full policy and guide for instructors.