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LBNL Establishes Berkeley Institute for Performance Studies

November 1, 2004

Alan Laub, former director of DOE’s SciDAC program, once said that in the field of high performance computing, “peak performance” was defined as the speed at which “the manufacturer guarantees that you can’t compute faster than that.” Although peak performance figures make for good marketing, they don’t provide much insight into actual performance. To rectify this, for the past eight years Berkeley Lab has been developing new tools and techniques for more accurately… Read More »

Kathy Yelick Named Leader of BIPS, CRD’s Future Technologies Group

November 1, 2004

Kathy Yelick, a professor of computer science at UC Berkeley with a joint appointment in the Computational Research Division, has been named to lead for the newly established Berkeley Institute of Performance Studies (BIPS). She will also be leading CRD’s Future Technologies Group (FTG). Yelick’s appointment, which includes a leave of absence from her teaching position, officially takes effect Jan. 1, 2005. The main goal of Yelick’s research is to develop techniques for obtaining… Read More »


Crystallization in Silico

November 1, 2004

When Francis Crick and James Watson deciphered the structure of DNA in 1953, X-ray crystallography became famous; key to their success was crystallography of DNA done by Rosalind Franklin in the laboratory of Maurice Wilkins. X-ray crystallography has long since become the workhorse for structural studies of big biological molecules, including most of the many thousands of proteins whose structures have been solved in the last half century. Crystallizing biological molecules is… Read More »

LBNL to Highlight Leadership in Computational Science in Presentations, Demos at SC04

October 27, 2004

What kind of scientific breakthroughs can researchers achieve with one million dedicated processor hours on one of the worlds fastest supercomputers? Two million hours? Thanks to a special Department of Energy program, three research groups studying turbulence, astrophysics and chemistry were awarded a total of nearly 5 million hours on the 6,652-processor IBM supercomputer at the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC). Leaders of the three projects, supported under the… Read More »

ESnet to Increase Network Performance, Reliability with Metropolitan Area Networks

October 8, 2004

Responding to the increasingly data-intensive demands of the scientific community, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) is implementing a new architecture of connected Metropolitan Area Networks (MAN). ESnet, which is managed by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, is a high-speed network serving thousands of DOE scientists and collaborators worldwide. A pioneer in providing high-bandwidth, reliable connections, ESnet enables researchers at national… Read More »


Michael Wehner to Analyze Climate Models for International Report on Climate Change

September 1, 2004

Lenny Oliker Michael Wehner, a cli- mate researcher in CRD’s Scientific Computing Group, has received a National Science Foundation grant to analyze the results of three new cli- mate models as a means of determining their predictive quality. Each of the three mod- els will be run to predict both past and future cli- mate change patterns. The results will also be compared with observa- tional climate data to see how the predictions and observations corre- late. “Some features… Read More »

ACTS Collection Sponsors Fifth Annual Workshop

September 1, 2004

Since the first workshop aimed at familiarizing users with the DOE Advanced CompuTational Software (ACTS) Collection was held five years ago, organizers Tony Drummond and Osni Marques have seen a real shift in the particiapants. Initially, the 50 or so attendees seemed new to many aspects of HPC, but were eager to learn about the ACTS Collection, a set of software tools aimed at simplifying the solution of common and important computational problems. Starting last year and continuing in… Read More »

LBNL’s Evaluation of Earth Simulator Performance Nominated for Best Paper Award at SC2004

September 1, 2004

With the re-emergence of viable vector computing systems such as the Earth Simulator and the Cray X1, there is renewed debate about which architecture is best suited for running large-scale scientific applications. In order to cut through the conflicting claims of fastest, biggest, etc., a team led by Lenny Oliker of CRD’s Future Technologies Group put five different systems through their paces, running four different scientific applications key to DOE research programs. As part of… Read More »

Cosmology Code’s Performance Characteristics Generates Paper

September 1, 2004

When the team from LBNL’s CRD and NERSC Divisions spent a week conducting performance evaluations of Japan’s Earth Simulator in late 2003, one of the five codes they intended to run did not scale well enough to be used. According to team leader Lenny Oliker, the application MADCAP (the Microwave Anisotropy Dataset Computational Analysis Package), a parallel implementation of cosmic microwave bacground map-making and power spectrum estimation algorithms, has been tuned since then… Read More »

Python/Globus Tools Speed Up Development of Data Grid for LIGO

July 1, 2004

BERKELEY, Calif. Programming tools developed at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory by Keith Jackson and his colleagues in the Computational Research Division’s Secure Grid Technologies Group have been used to set up an efficient system to distribute new data that will put the predictions of Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity to the test. To date, more than 50 TB of data from LIGO has been replicated to nine sites on two continents, quickly and… Read More »