DOE awards supercomputing time

The Energy Department has awarded 55 scientific projects a total of 265 million processor hours on its top supercomputers, the agency has announced.

DOE budgeted the computational time under its Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment program (INCITE). Now in its fifth year, INCITE supports computationally intensive, large-scale research projects, particularly those too large or too time consuming to be executed by the researchers' own facilities.

The projects range across a number of scientific disciplines, including energy conservation, biology, climate change and astrophysics.

Thirty-one of the projects are new, and 24 have been renewed from previous years. They are being conducted by a variety of universities, private companies, Energy department and other research labs, and other research organizations.

The projects'which will enjoy three times the amount of processor time awarded last year'will primarily be carried out at supercomputers located at the Oak Ridge and Argonne national laboratories. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Molecular Science Computing Facility at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory will also pitch in some cycles.

'[DOE's] Office of Science has two of the top ten most powerful supercomputers," said DOE Under Secretary for Science Raymond Orbach, in a statement. 'We're proud to provide these resources to help researchers advance scientific knowledge and understanding and thereby to provide insight into major scientific and industrial issues.'

A job that requires 1 million processor hours to execute would take about 41 days on a machine with 1,000 processors, according to the agency. That same job would take more than 57 years to run on a standard desktop computer.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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