News Archives

RSS Feed

  • UNM
  • >Home
  • >News
  • >2005
  • >January
  • >Computer and Computational Science at Los Alamos National Labs "Where we are and some thoughts for the future"

Computer and Computational Science at Los Alamos National Labs "Where we are and some thoughts for the future"

January 27, 2005

  • Date: January 27, 2005 
  • Time: 11:00 – 12:15 p.m. 
  • Location: Woodward 149

Bill Feiereisen <wjf@lanl.gov>
Los Alamos National Laboratories

When one thinks of Los Alamos National Laboratory one doesn’t normally think of computers and computational science. One thinks of that place up on the Pajarito Mesa where nuclear weapons were born.

Things have evolved much since then. Los Alamos is a National Security Laboratory. Its major security mission is the maintenance of nuclear weapons, but it now plays a very strong role in the science of threats against national security. What is less well known is the vibrant basic research community in areas such as materials science, global climate change, energy security, socio-technological simulations and biology.

So what does this have to do with computers and computational science? In the modern world, some of these areas “do not lend themselves well to experimentation.” Obviously simulation plays a huge role as a tool in modern science, but its use is not as simple as “buy a big computer and run a code.” Computer and computational science at LANL largely revolves around foreseeing the future of hardware and software and building toward it.

This talk is meant to give a flavor of that software and hardware work that lies behind the scenes in the supercomputing simulations that occur at LANL. I’ll talk about the simulations themselves, some of the algorithm work and then the software computing environments and hardware with which we work.