US Army Engineers Research and Development Center Opens New Supercomputing Research Facility
VICKSBURG, Mississippi, January 25, 2022 – The Information Technology Laboratory (ITL) at the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) held a groundbreaking ceremony for two new state-of-the-art facilities at the center Supercomputing Research Center (SRC) in Vicksburg, Mississippi on Thursday, January 20, 2021.
The Supercomputing Research Center (SRC) provides world-class high-performance computing (HPC) to help the Department of Defense (DoD) solve its toughest and most complex problems. The SRC also provides a complete HPC ecosystem that includes hardware, software, data storage, scientific visualization, training and expertise.
“It’s a pretty exciting time,” said Dr. David Horner, director of ITL. “Over the past 30 years, ITL has truly grown in capacity, innovation and impact on the DoD. One of the key aspects is our continuous development of world-class facilities.
The new SRC facilities were funded in 2018 and consist of offices and conference rooms. The facilities also house one of five DoD Supercomputing Resource Centers of the DoD High Performance Computing Modernization Program. Additionally, 10,000 square feet of elevated floor space provides ERDC-ITL with the ability to field large-scale supercomputers for the DoD science and technology and acquisition communities, allowing them to address some of the workloads of DoD’s toughest supercomputing work.
“The Supercomputing Research Center has long been a source of groundbreaking research and innovative problem solving within the ERDC, and I’m confident this new facility will only amplify that,” said Horner.
Horner recognized Dr. Jeff Holland, ERDC Director Emeritus and former ITL Director, as well as former ITL Director Dr. Reed Mosher and former ITL Deputy Director Patti Duett , for having had the vision of these new facilities.
“It’s easy for us to bring in top domestic talent because we have these wonderful facilities, amazing computers and we do high-level, impactful work,” Horner said. “We are here today because of these people who made the investment and had the vision of where we needed to be.”
“We’ve come a long way from trailers to this type of installation,” said Bobby Hunter, director of the Supercomputing Research Center, recalling the origin of the SRC early in his career. “This type of installation really expresses the fact that you are a world-class organization. Facilities like this make it clear to people, especially when it comes to recruiting. It’s an awesome feature that we can share with them and motivate them to come and work with us. »
The ERDC commissioned its first supercomputer in 1990 and began to excel in supercomputing around 1992, when the DoD formed the High Performance Computing Modernization Program. Since then, ITL has commissioned one of the largest
CRAY T3E supercomputers in the world, the 12th most powerful supercomputer in the world and the largest supercomputer in the DoD until last year.
“Mississippi has two of the DoD’s supercomputing centers right here in this great state, and we represent over 50 percent of the HPC capacity delivered across the DoD,” Hunter said.
The installations were made possible through the collaborative efforts of many, including ERDC’s partnership with Entergy to provide a new, cost-effective on-site backup power solution using natural gas generators.
“Although the main purpose of the generators is to support the facility in the event of a power outage, Entergy can also use the generators to provide additional capacity to the network during peak hours,” explained Dr. David Pittman, Director of the ERDC. “This is a great example of how ERDC works with partners and thinks outside the box to deliver the best solutions for the military, USACE, ERDC and the nation.”
“This facility is very important to this country, this state, and this community, and so it’s a very important customer to us,” said Haley Fisackerly, president and CEO of Entergy Mississippi.
“We don’t do anything significant without collaborations and partnerships, so the ability to work with Entergy to provide long-lasting, reliable power for these supercomputers is so important to us in achieving our mission,” said Horner. “We sit here as one of the premier investments the DoD is making in computing power to help sustain our warfighter, and the facilities we are opening today are very important to the overall mission that the ERDC and the ITL have to support the DoD. This facility opens the door to a world of new possibilities, and I’m excited to see what the future holds.
About the Information Technology Lab
The Information Technology Lab uses high-performance computing (HPC) to help the DoD research, development, test, and evaluation (RDT&E) community access information that would otherwise be too expensive, dangerous, or time-consuming to process. observation and experimentation alone. ITL also runs the DoD High Performance Computing Modernization Program (HPCMP), a multi-service effort and national asset that provides a comprehensive modeling and simulation ecosystem. The HPCMP integrates the supercomputing capabilities and computer science expertise that enable DoD scientists and engineers to conduct a wide range of RDT&E activities and amplify their creativity, productivity and impact.
The U.S. Army Engineers Research and Development Center (ERDC) solves the nation’s toughest engineering and environmental challenges. ERDC develops innovative solutions in the fields of civil and military engineering, geospatial sciences, water resources and environmental sciences for the military, the Ministry of Defense, civil agencies and the nation. Find out more on our website: www.erdc.usace.army.mil.