Media contact: Jon Bashor, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 510-486-5849, JBashor@lbl.gov
October 28, 2002
WASHINGTON, DC Raymond L. Orbach, Director of the Office of Science, U.S. Department of Energy, will discuss "High End Computation and Scientific Discovery" at SC2002, the annual conference of high-performance computing and networking.
SC2002 will be held Nov. 16-22 in Baltimore, Md. Orbach will open the second day of the conference's technical program, speaking at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 20.
"The Department of Energy and its predecessors have long been one of the world's driving forces behind scientific computing, so having a speaker of Dr. Orbach's standing promises to make for a very interesting session,' said Roscoe Giles, a professor at Boston University and chair of the SC2002 conference. "We think his talk will mesh perfectly with our conference theme of 'From Terabytes to Insights'."
As director of DOE's Office of Science, Orbach oversees DOE's Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC) program. Launched last year, SciDAC aims to develop the scientific computing software and hardware infrastructure needed to use terascale computers to advance fundamental research in several areas related to the department's missions, including climate modeling, fusion energy sciences, chemical sciences, nuclear astrophysics, high energy physics and high-performance computing.
In the abstract of his presentation, Orbach notes, "Simulations generate insight into the laws of nature for systems too complex for direct calculation observation, or in circumstances where descriptive laws are absent. The required high-sustained speeds lead to a new environment. Rather than simply scaling up existing machines computer systems, communities with common computational interests will join together with applied mathematicians, computer scientists, and chip and interconnect manufacturers to tailor machines to scientific problems. The scale of operation will require large blocks of time on massive computational structures systems or platforms, changing the nature of interaction to resemble that of high energy physics: groups of users with common purpose joining together to work in large teams. This new environment will be driven by the promise of discovery in regions of enormous interest and importance."
Orbach was sworn in as director of the Office of Science in March 2002. As director of the Office of Science, Orbach manages an organization that is the third largest federal sponsor of basic research in the United States and is viewed as one of the premier science organizations in the world. The Office of Science's funds programs in high energy and nuclear physics, basic energy sciences, magnetic fusion energy, biological and environmental research and computational science. Prior to his appointment, Orbach served as chancellor of the University of California, Riverside. He has also served as a professor of physics at Harvard and UCLA, and was Provost of the College of Letters and Science at UCLA before becoming chancellor at UC Riverside. His research in theoretical and experimental physics has resulted in the publication of more than 240 scientific articles and he is a fellow of the American Physical Society and the AAAS.
Following Orbach in the Nov. 20 plenary session will be Julian Boriill, a staff scientist at DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Begining at 9:15 a.m., Borrill will give a talk entitled, "Computing the Cosmos: from Big Bang to Black Holes." Borrill has been a member of several large-scale international collaborations researching the nature of the universe, from how it was formed to how it may eventually end.
"Our ultimate goal is to be able to simulate the entire history of the Universe, from the creation of spacetime in the Big Bang to its local negation in a black hole singularity,"said Borrill, a computational cosmologist. "In this talk I will discuss the high performance computing challenges we face in four particular steps along this path - in terms of both the enhanced simulations needed, and the unprecedented data analyses against which we will test them - and consider how far we might be able to go in meeting these challenges with a true general purpose 100 teraflop/s computational capability."
Borrill is currently working on the development of parallel algorithms for the analysis of the increasingly intractable cosmic microwave background datasets expected over the next 10 years from the BOOMERANG and MAXIMA balloons and the MAP and PLANCK satellites. More information about his work can be found at http://www.nersc.gov/~borrill.
SC2002 is sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Computer Society and the Association for Computing Machinery's (ACM) Special Interest Group on Computer Architecture. For more information about the SC2002 conference, go to http://www.sc-2002.org/.Ray Orbach, Director of Office of Science at U.S. Department of Energy, to Address SC2002 Conference in November