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Making Impact on Science

NERSC's 2008 Allocations Reflect Its Ability to Server a Broad Range of Science

March 1, 2008

With its mission to support both high-impact and broad-impact science, NERSC is providing DOE 678.51 million MPP hours on its four supercomputers in 2008 for research in disciplines that include climate, material science, astrophysics, life sciences, computer science and combustion. 

NERSC can offer more computing resources this year thanks to the new Cray XT4, named Franklin after Benjamin Franklin. With three other supercomputers available to serve its 3,000 users, NERSC continues to demonstrate its ability to support a wide range of projects in scopes and sizes.

Researchers have the flexibility to use any of the four supercomputers. Instead of allocating raw CPU hours, NERSC allocates MPP (massively parallel processing) hours that take into account the different computing power among the systems.

The charts and graphs below show the breadth of sciences being done at NERSC. The INCITE (Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment) allocations support computationally intensive projects that are expected to produce high-impact scientific discoveries.

The term “DOE Production” refers to allocations made by each of the six program offices within the Office of Science. These allocations include resources for projects from the Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing (SciDAC) program, which aims to develop software tools needed to advance discoveries on terascale computers.

Data storage is an integral component of NERSC’s resources. NERSC staff perform regular assessments and upgrades of the High Performance Storage System (HPSS). Just last year, NERSC purchased new tape drives from Sun Microsystems. The new drives provide 2.5 times more capacity and four times the performance of the previous drives. Storage allocations are measured in SRUs (storage resource units).

About NERSC and Berkeley Lab
The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) is a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility that serves as the primary high performance computing center for scientific research sponsored by the Office of Science. Located at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, NERSC serves almost 10,000 scientists at national laboratories and universities researching a wide range of problems in climate, fusion energy, materials science, physics, chemistry, computational biology, and other disciplines. Berkeley Lab is a DOE national laboratory located in Berkeley, California. It conducts unclassified scientific research and is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy. »Learn more about computing sciences at Berkeley Lab.