High-performance computing boosts resources research

By November 23rd, 2009

Advances in high-performance computing are revolutionising the way CSIRO solves problems in the resources industry according to the November/December edition of CSIRO Exploration & Mining's earthmatters magazine.

“Algorithms and software are the principal tools for simulation, visualisation and the processing of huge datasets,” Exploration & Mining Chief Dr Mike McWilliams said.

“But advanced computing systems that put these codes into use are equally important engines that power discovery and understanding.”

“We are giving our scientists and engineers better access to high-performance computing allowing them to run data-intensive applications and high resolution simulations more quickly and with more accuracy, producing better results in less time.”

“Advances in high-performance computing are revolutionising the way CSIRO solves problems in the resources industry.”

Stories in this high-performance computing edition include:

Next-generation computing: The Pawsey Centre, a new $80 million high-performance computing base, is coming to Western Australia.

Computing grid enables interoperable access: CSIRO’s AuScope Grid is helping scientists access high-performance computing resources. The project will create an e-research infrastructure to federate and make nationally distributed datasets.

New ore-system results: Access to X-ray tomography, which requires a high-performance computing network to handle the huge datasets, is improving and results are already forthcoming.

Computers ‘clear’ images: Advances in computing are enhancing 3D images used in the remote operation of mining machinery. Programmable Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) provide access to hundreds of processing units running in parallel.

Modelling system expands its scope: CSIRO’s renowned COSFLOW modelling software is given a boost thanks to access to high-performance computing.

Geochemists join the fast lane: A new Microsoft high-performance computing system means geochemists no longer have to rely on desktop PCs for modelling.

New era dawns for Earth Sciences: Harnessing the power of high-performance computing is offering huge improvements to the capabilities of researchers in the earth sciences.

The latest edition of earthmatters also features: Interviews with iVEC CEO Professor Andrew Rohl and CSIRO Mathematical Software Engineer Dr Andy Wilkins, and news on how CSIRO’s ‘self-organising map’ technology is assessing stream and lake sediment geochemical survey data.

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