OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Feb. 23, 2010 -- Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers will lead projects that have been awarded a total of 251 million processor hours of computing time on supercomputers located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Argonne National Laboratory. These awards were made through the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment (INCITE) program. This year, the INCITE program will make approximately 1.6 billion processor hours available to projects designed to facilitate breakthroughs in areas such as climate change, alternative energy, life sciences and materials science. The projects were selected based on peer review and evaluations of their potential to advance scientific discovery.
Jeremy Smith, a biophysicist, was awarded 25 million processor hours to run simulations that will help reveal the inner workings of lignocellulosic biomass, a raw material for biofuel production. Cellulose is a complex carbohydrate that forms the cell walls of plants and gives leaves, stalks, stems and trunks their rigidity. Figuring out how to unlock its sugar subunits, which can be fermented to produce ethanol, is an engineering challenge. Meeting that challenge could enable full use of plants for cellulosic ethanol. The simulations are designed to provide a picture of biomass that will help experimentalists design plants with new, less resistant cell walls and enzymes that break cellulose down more efficiently.
Terry Jones, computer scientist, was awarded 4 million processor hours to investigate improvements in system software on leadership class computer systems. By the end of this decade exascale computers with unprecedented processor counts and complexity will require significant new levels of scalability and fault management. As system software designed decades ago is applied to computers that comprise hundreds of thousands of processors, leadership class systems and application sof
|Contact: Jim Pearce|
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory