NSF Report: Universities Show Growing use of HPC

Over at Laboratory Equipment, Tim Studt writes that HPC, networking, and computer storage capabilities in U.S. academia have increased substantially over the past seven years, according to a recent report by the National Science Foundation.

Academia has continued to gain greater access to high-speed networks through an accelerating high-speed bandwidth of national and regional providers, which includes Internet2, the university-owned LambdaRail and the Dept. of Energy’s Energy Sciences Network. In 2011, 59% of academic institutions stated they had at least 1 Gb/sec, up from just 21% in 2005. Those universities having at least 10 Gb/sec network connections increased from 2% in 2005 to 25% in 2011. Nearly 200 of the NSF’s 539 surveyed academic institutions also reported that they maintained HPC resources of 1 teraflop or faster in 2011. Indeed, of the TOP500 fastest supercomputers in the world (June 2013 ranking), at least 90 are listed as being in academia with 21 of those being in U.S. academia. Some of the sites in this list are noted as “research sites,” which physically can be on university campuses as well. The last academic site on the list, No. 497, is Clemson Univ., S.C., with a Dell/Sun/IBM system with a performance rating of 96.9 Tflop/sec (Rmax).

The NSF report noted that in 2011, 24 of the 539 surveyed institutions had combined computing capacities of at least 100 Tflops.

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