Cutting-edge projects awarded computing time on Blue Gene/L

Argonne and IBM provide major allocations for large-scale research simulations through DOE INCITE program

ARGONNE, Ill - 01 Feb 2007: Nine computing projects ranging from predicting protein structure to simulating the formation of foams have been awarded large amounts of time on IBM Blue Gene/L computer systems at the U. S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory and IBM's T.J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, N.Y. The computer time is available to researchers through the Department of Energy's INCITE program – Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment.

These projects were allocated nearly 10 million processor-hours through the Argonne and IBM collaboration. Five are new projects, and four are renewals.

In new endeavors:

In renewed projects:

Through collaboration with IBM, as part of the INCITE program, Argonne will provide 4 million hours on their Blue Gene/L system (BGL), and IBM will provide 6 million hours on their larger Blue Gene/L system at the T.J. Watson Research Center (BGW). The IBM BGW system is the second fastest computer in the world, with a capability of 114 teraflops — 114 trillion calculations per second.

The Blue Gene/L at Argonne arrived in January 2005 through funding from the Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research in DOE's Office of Science. Argonne evaluated the system and began providing resources to INCITE projects in 2006 with the formation of the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility.

INCITE has enabled scientists to run large-scale simulations and gain greater insight into challenging problems in science and engineering. The INCITE program continues to expand, with current research applications in chemistry, combustion, astrophysics, genetics, materials science and turbulence.

“This grant allows us to perform computer simulations, at an unprecedented scale, on the dissolving of soap and forming of suds. The resulting approach should help us formulate products faster and more efficiently. That means the consumer wins by getting better products sooner, and at better value, than would have been possible using traditional methods,” said Kelly Anderson from Procter & Gamble,

Argonne's Paul Fischer said, “With this INCITE award, researchers will be able to conduct large-eddy simulations of the thermal-hydraulics that governs advanced burner reactor peak temperature, which is critical to the economy and safety of reactors.”

“This award will enable my team to make significant contributions to the challenging problem of understanding, modeling and manipulating nanoscale photonic devices, with a rich variety of applications in science and technology,” said Tamar Seideman of Northwestern University.

"We're pleased to see such a wide range of projects being run on Blue Gene," said David Turek, vice president of IBM's Deep Computing group. "The diversity of this research is a testament to the enduring utility of the Blue Gene design and offers a glimpse of the commercial potential that is the future of supercomputing."

The nation's first national laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory conducts basic and applied scientific research across a wide spectrum of disciplines, ranging from high-energy physics to climatology and biotechnology. Since 1990, Argonne has worked with more than 600 companies and numerous federal agencies and other organizations to help advance America's scientific leadership and prepare the nation for the future. Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science.

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