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New supercomputers look to uncover mysteries of the universe

IT proportal 2019-10-10 17:30:56
(Image credit: Image Credit: Aperture75 / Shutterstock)

Simulating how a galaxy is formed, or how a black hole gets created takes a lot of computational power. That’s why The Flatiron Institute, located in New York City, decided to partner up with Lenovo and Intel, in order to create an advanced machine capable of running such simulations.

“Science should dominate our researchers’ time, not computation,” said Dr. Ian Fisk, Scientific Computing Core co-director at the Flatiron Institute. To make sure scientists have enough time to do science, the Flatiron Institute (which is actually the internal research division of the Simons Foundation) uses the ThinkSystem SD530 Dense Rack servers with Lenovo Neptune Thermal Transfer Module (TTM) technology. It is running the Intel Xeon Platinum 8268 processors, part of the 2nd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable family featuring Intel Deep Learning Boost technology.

“Our goal is that the limiting factor in research should be the carbon-based systems rather than the silicon-based systems,” Fisk added.

By using advanced computing power, scientists can process petabytes of data faster and more efficiently. That cuts down on the time necessary to do various research. They can also carry forward workload-intensive research projects that otherwise would simply not have taken place, it was said.

Intel and Lenovo are helping the Flatiron Institute pursue advances in biological sciences, astrophysics, quantum physics, and computational mathematics.

“Reading a 200 GB genomic sequencing file for a biology project or making 11,000 connections to other nodes for an astrophysics project requires a lot of memory. Now, when a researcher comes along with an interesting challenge that their equipment doesn’t support, we can achieve that.”