GEANT2 helps drive high speed Supercomputer Projects
By Mike Hanlon
June 19, 2007
June 20, 2007 The speed of collaborative research using Europe’s network of supercomputers will be advanced by a major upgrade announced today. The Distributed European Infrastructure for Supercomputing Applications (DEISA), has increased connectivity speeds ten-fold to 10 Gbps, through dedicated links designed and deployed by the GEANT2 pan-European research and education network.
This will allow researchers in projects such as SEISSOL (research into earthquake simulations) and COMSIMM (looking at current and future climate trends) to harness the combined processing power of DEISA’s 200 teraflops of supercomputing infrastructure. Requests for supercomputing resources amongst scientific research domains are on the increase, with 23 projects scheduled for operation in 2007. Amongst these applications, projects in progress include ICAROS (stratospheric ozone research, climate change), gyro3d (plasma instability) and HELIUM (radiation-matter interactions).
GÉANT2 is the largest research and education network ever built in Europe. Extending over 50,000 km, it connects 34 countries on the continent and has extensive links to North America and Asia. Managed by international research and education network provider DANTE, it is co-funded by Europe's National Research and Education Networks (NRENs) and the European Commission.
GÉANT2 and its partner NRENs currently connect seven DEISA sites across Europe - BSC (Spain), IDRIS (France), FZJ, HLRS, LRZ, RZG (all Germany) and SARA (The Netherlands) via dedicated 10 Gbps wavelengths, all managed by a central switch. Sites including CINECA (Italy), CSC, the Finnish IT center for science (Finland), EPCC (UK) and ECMWF (UK) are scheduled for connection by mid-2007.
DEISA provides leading scientific researchers with access to a European cluster of state-of-the-art High Performance Computing (HPC) resources. The “private network” of point-to-point links deployed by GÉANT2 will enable researchers to gain faster and more efficient access to DEISA’s shared file system, supporting ground-breaking applications in computational sciences. DEISA’s aim is to create an integrated European HPC ecosystem before the end of the decade.
Victor Alessandrini, Project Director, DEISA says: “The underlying aim of the DEISA project is to enable scientific discovery across a broad spectrum of science and technology. By exploiting the point-to-point connections that GÉANT2 provides, we’re able to create a high speed, integrated European supercomputing environment. This will enable us to share the massive computational resources that are needed for efficiency and performance. “
“The DEISA supercomputing environment will deliver a vital resource for the European research community, said Hans Döbbeling, General Manager, DANTE. “By using GÉANT2’s point-to-point connections, DEISA can ensure its users are able to maximise usage of Europe’s supercomputing resources.”