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Impacts and opportunities for leadership computing

Zacharia, T (Oak Ridge National Laboratory)
Friday 26 September 2008, 14:15-15:00

Seminar Room 1, Newton Institute


Energy issues are central to the most important strategic challenges facing the United States and the world. The energy problem can be broadly defined as providing enough energy to support higher standards of living for a growing fraction of the world’s increasing population without creating intractable conflict over resources or causing irreparable harm to our environment. It is increasingly clear that even large-scale deployment of the best, currently-available, energy technologies will not be adequate to successfully tackle this problem. Substantial advances in the state of the art in energy generation, distribution, and end use are needed. It is also clear that a significant and sustained effort in basic and applied research and development (R&D) will be required to deliver these advances and ensure a desirable energy future. It is in this context that high-performance computing takes on a significance that is co-equal with theory and experiment. As computing enters the petascale, a capability that until recently was beyond imagination is now poised to address these critical problems. Oak Ridge National Laboratory is home to two supercomputer centers funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation. The world-leading petascale computers that are now being deployed will make it possible to solve R&D problems of importance to a secure energy future.


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