News Archive

DOE Awards Supercomputing Time to UCSD, SDSC Researchers

Published 01/18/2008

For Immediate Release

Media Contacts:
Warren R. Froelich
SDSC Communications
858 822-3622 or

Jan Zverina
SDSC Communications
858 534-5111 or

Scientists from the San Diego Supercomputer Center and other parts of the University of California, San Diego - conducting research in Parkinson's Disease, fusion energy and climate change - were awarded supercomputing time by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) as part of its 2008 Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment (INCITE) program.

In total, the DOE's Office of Science awarded a record 265 million hours of processor time to 55 new and renewed scientific projects, the largest amount of supercomputing time ever allocated in the Department's history and three times that of last year's award.

Now in its fifth year, INCITE supports computationally intensive scientific investigations, enabling researchers at national laboratories, universities and industry to explore a wide range of scientific challenges.

Projects involving UC San Diego and SDSC awarded processing time under this program include:

  • Life Sciences: "Simulation and Modeling of Synuclein-based Protofibril Structures as a Means of Understanding the Molecular Basis of Parkinson's Disease."
    Principal Investigator: Igor Tsigelny, San Diego Supercomputer Center.
    Co-investigators: Eliezer Masliah and Stanley Opella, UC San Diego.
    The project was awarded 1.2 million processor hours on the IBM Blue Gene/P at Argonne National Laboratory.
  • Fusion Energy: "Verification and Validation of Petascale Simulation of Turbulent Transport in Fusion Plasmas."
    Principal Investigator: Patrick Diamond, UC San Diego.
    Co-investigators: C-S. Chang, New York University; Stephane Ethier, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory; Scott Klasky, Oak Ridge National Laboratory; Zhihong Lin, UC Irvine.
    The project was awarded 8 million processor hours on the Cray XT4 at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
  • Climate Research: "Simulation of Global Cloudiness."
    Principal Investigator: David Randall, Colorado State University.
    Co-investigators: Ross Heikes, Colorado State University; John Helly, San Diego Supercomputer Center; Bruce Palmer and Karen Schuchardt, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
    The project was awarded 153,846 processor hours on the NERSC HPC at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
  • Climate Research: "The Role of Eddies in the Meridional Overturning Circulation."
    Principal Investigator: Paola Cessi, UC San Diego.
    The project was awarded 486,000 processor hours on the Cray X1E at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
  • Computer Sciences: "Performance Evaluation and Analysis Consortium End Station."
    Principal investigator: Patrick H. Worley, Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
    Co-investigators: David H. Bailey and Leonid Oliker, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Jack Dongarra, University of Tennessee; William D. Gropp, Argonne National Laboratory; Jeffrey K. Hollingsworth, University of Maryland; Allen Malony, University of Oregon; John Mellor-Crummey, Rice University; Barton P. Miller, University of Wisconsin; Daniel Reed, University of North Carolina; Allan Snavely, San Diego Supercomputer Center; Jeffrey S. Vetter, Oak Ridge National Laboratory; Katherine Yelick, UC Berkeley; Bronis R. de Supinski, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
    The project was awarded 4 million processor hours on the IBM Blue Gene/P at Argonne National Laboratory, and 4 million processor hours on the Cray XT4 at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

By providing scientists access to some of the world's most powerful supercomputers, the awards enable researchers to conduct their studies in weeks or months, as opposed to years or decades.

"The Department of Energy's Office of Science has two of the top ten most powerful supercomputers, and using them through the INCITE program is having a transformational effect on America's scientific and economic competitiveness," said DOE Under Secretary for Science Raymond L. Orbach. "Once considered the domain of only small groups of researchers, supercomputers today are tools for discovery, driving scientific advancement across a wide range of disciplines. 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."