High Performance Computing in Science & Engineering

On October 5-6, 2017 will be held “High Performance Computing in Science & Engineering – 20th Results and Review Workshop” organized by HLRS at the University of Stuttgart (Stuttgart, Germany). Applications are already open; you can register for the workshop until September 28th, 2017.

The purpose of the CoeGSS is to prepare for a quantum leap

Michael Resch, Director of HLRS — High Performance Computing Center Stuttgart, shares with us his visions about the next challenges in HPC and on the development of the merge of HPC and GSS.

The major challenges in HPC for the coming two years are two: one is the end of Moore’s law; the second challenge is that we would like to reach the exaflop, which we can only do if we use millions or tens of millions or even hundreds of millions of cores, which will make it extremely difficult to program these systems.

But which is the vision behind the merge of HPC and GSS? In Resch’s words it looks like an idyllic encounter: «On one hand we have a field that has a tremendous need for compute power and it’s only in its beginning when it comes to simulations, while HPC will reach the exaflop in maybe three to four years from now, which will provide this simulation performance that is required to solve some of the problems of global systems science».

The difficulty is that HPC and GSS are two different fields that talk two different languages.

«We have to find the right models for describing Global Systems and we need to turn these models into programs, that are scalable on millions of cores», Resch said.

With the merge of HPC and GSS we target a new challenge.

«Most of the Centres of Excellence focus on field in which HPC is active for decades — explain Resch — . GSS is a field that has to be developed, so the purpose of the CoE is not to get another “epsilon” on the development of the field, but rather to provide or prepare for a quantum leap, for the first time what we offer is that people working in GSS actually have access to the fastest systems in the world».

High Performance Computing meets Global Systems Science

After the International Conference on Synthetic Populations in Lucca, on these pages we’d like to open a confrontation on the societal impact of High Performance Computing and Global Systems Science.
In the beautiful location of IMT School, Carlo Jaeger, Potsdam University, and Bastian Koller, High Performance Computing Center Stuttgart (HLRS), offered us interesting ideas to think about.

We do not really understand the Global Systems. We have made advances in understanding complex systems at all scales, from molecules all the way up to galaxies. Global Systems have properties of themselves, they are very important for us to understand, it’s urgent and it is scientifically very interesting.

Carlo Jaeger told us, then added: Studying this kind of systems, that’s what we are engaged in.

CoeGSS is an opportunity to bring together people studying Global Systems with people working with extremely powerful computers

“High Performance Computing gives us the potential to go beyond the national limitations of experiments, tests and predictions, we can now simulate things which are too dangerous to do” added Bastian Koller.
If you use HPC, you can make simulations much wider and globally, so you can talk about countries, country borders, you can talk about the distribution of people, the different attitudes, the different behaviours.

The more parameters you can feed into the system the more calculations you can do and with HPC we have the potential to evolve this step by step, to bring in all these parameters and calculate it in a reasonable time frame