November 9, 1999
When the nation's high-performance computing and networking community
gathers for its annual meeting, 'SC99', this month, Department of
Energy scientists, programs and facilities will have key roles in
showing how computational science is changing the face of scientific
SC99, the conference previously known as Supercomputing, will be
held November 13-19 in Portland, Ore., and provides a forum for
demonstrating new technologies, forecasting future trends, showing
scientific results and presenting achievements in such areas as
scalable architectures, networking, enabling technologies, data
archives, visualization and computational modeling. SC99 brings
together scientists, engineers, designers, managers and executives
from all areas of high-performance computing and networking and
the global information infrastructure. Among those displaying their
latest achievements and applications and making technical presentations
are researchers from the Department of Energy's (DOE) national laboratory
"For more than 40 years, DOE's research scientists have driven
-- and in some cases, invented -- many of the innovations in high-performance
computing and networking," said Under Secretary of Energy Ernest
Moniz. "Our groundbreaking work in this area is leading to stronger
national security, improved medical technologies, the development
of new efficient manufacturing processes, more effective educational
programs and a stronger economy."
Moniz noted that the nation's first supercomputers were developed
to support the Energy Department's national security and science
missions and that the department pioneered the use of computer networks
to allow researchers across the country to utilize the Department
of Energy's supercomputing centers through its ESnet program.
At this year's conference, the department's National Energy Research
Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), a national facility located
at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory,
will mark its 25th anniversary. NERSC was the nation's first unclassified
supercomputing center and the first to allow researchers around
the nation to seamlessly tap into a center's computing and data
storage resources. ESnet, which grew out of that effort to allow
remote access, will also mark 25 years of networking leadership.
Throughout the week-long conference, DOE-funded researchers will
highlight their work in various panel discussions, technical paper
presentations and poster sessions. Additionally, many DOE facilities
will have exhibition booths to demonstrate new computing technologies
and tools. Below is a list of the department's participants and
highlights of their work:
- The Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory will present in-depth
results from several high performance cluster computers employing
Gigabit Ethernet and will illustrate the price-to-performance
benefit of extending the Ethernet standard for cluster computing.
- The Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory will
showcase current work in numerical tools and libraries for large-scale
computational applications; parallel and cluster computing; advanced
networking; and scientific computing applications in combustion,
computational chemistry and structural genomics.
- The Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory will
demonstrate its work in high-resolution, stereoscopic scientific
visualization; state-of-the-art computational facilities for recording
and analyzing petabytes of experimental data; and the lab's Center
for Data Intensive Computing's impact on high-energy and nuclear
physics, aerosol and climate studies, combustion chemistry and
- The Department of Energy's Accelerated Strategic Computing Initiative
(ASCI) will develop supercomputers capable of 100 trillion operations
per second in "production mode" by 2004. These computers, located
at the department's Sandia, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore
National Laboratories, will use simulations and experimental data
to generate 3-D full-system simulations of U.S. nuclear weapons
systems behavior to help assess and certify the safety and reliability
of the nuclear weapons stockpile without further nuclear testing.
At SC99, ASCI will feature a room-sized Power Wall to interactively
view simulation results from all three ASCI supercomputers in
areas that are representative of the ASCI University Alliances
program: turbulence and transport; engineering applications; materials
science; astrophysics; and, distance/distributed computing/communications.
- DOE2000 is an initiative to develop advanced computing and collaboration
technologies for research and development in the areas of physics,
chemistry, materials, computing and engineering. Remote operation
of electron microscopes and new software tools to rapidly create
high performance, portable scientific simulation software will
be demonstrated, as well as advanced electronic scientific notebooks.
- The Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory
will demonstrate a visualization of the lab's Collider Detector
Facility, offering a "virtual tour" of the detector and simulated
particle collisions. The use of immersive 3-D stereo gives the
feeling of being directly inside the detector, watching the collisions.
- The Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
will showcase the history and contributions of NERSC and ESnet
over the past 25 years, as well as provide demonstrations of regional
climate simulations and computing on PC clusters running Linux
and STACS. STACS, the Storage Access Coordination System, is a
new method for efficiently organizing and accessing massive amounts
of scientific data.
- The Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory will
demonstrate a parallel spectral turbulence application written
with the POOMA framework running on an Extreme Linux cluster.
Other computing applications include predictive modeling of the
global climate, wildfire, and transportation systems and development
of scientific visualization tools.
- The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory will
take visitors on a tour of the virtual human. Other highlighted
research includes: quantum computing, high performance distributed
storage, cluster computing, the genome integrated supercomputing
toolkit, climate prediction and 1999 R&D 100 award-winning
distributed computing software NetSolve and Atlas.
- The Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
will show ongoing research in computational simulation: Grand
Challenge projects; scalable computational chemistry applications
that exploit parallel computing; engineering design and simulation
for automotive applications; fluid dynamic simulation of flow
conditions for Columbia River dams; subsurface flow of waste products;
collaborative problem solving environments; collaborative research
and distance learning toolkits; and applications in parallel programming
tools and libraries.
SC99 is co-sponsored by the IEEE Computer Society and the Association
for Computing Machinery and draws about 6,000 attendees annually.
For more information about SC99, visit the web site at: http://www.sc99.org/