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NPR Podcast: Scientists Use Supercomputers To Search For Drugs To Combat COVID-19

In this segment from the NPR Here and Now program, Joe Palca talks to researchers using ORNL supercomputers to fight COVID-19. “Supercomputers have joined the race to find a drug that might help with COVID-19. Scientists are using computational techniques to see if any drugs already on the shelf might be effective against the disease. The two researchers performed simulations on Summit of more than 8,000 compounds to screen for those that are most likely to bind to the main “spike” protein of the coronavirus, rendering it unable to infect host cells.”

Job of the Week: Research Scientist at the University of Wyoming

The Center of Innovation for Flow through Porous media (COIFPM) at the University of Wyoming has multiple openings for highly motivated research scientists to join its computational research branch. The focus of the modeling team is to develop advanced computational tools to simulate multiphase flow and transport in porous materials. To this end, we utilize high-performance computing techniques to build innovative and highly parallelized computer platforms that are tested on powerful supercomputers and validated against experimental data.

LLNL Researchers aid COVID-19 response in anti-viral research

Backed by five high performance computing (HPC) clusters and years of expertise in vaccine and countermeasure development, a COVID-19 response team of LLNL researchers from various disciplines has used modeling & simulation, along with machine learning, to identify about 20 initial, yet promising, antibody designs from a nearly infinite set of potentials and to examine millions of small molecules that could have anti-viral properties. The candidates will need to be synthesized and experimentally tested — which Lab researchers cautioned could take time — but progress is being made.

Podcast: Supercomputing the Coronavirus on Frontera

Scientists are preparing a massive computer model of the coronavirus that they expect will give insight into how it infects in the body. They’ve taken the first steps, testing the first parts of the model and optimizing code on the Frontera supercomputer at the Texas Advanced Computing Center of UT Austin. The knowledge gained from the full model can help researchers design new drugs and vaccines to combat the coronavirus.

Urban Seismology in Megacities: the Los Angeles BASIN Experiment

Dr. Patricia Persaud from Louisiana State University gave this talk in a recent IRIS webinar. “Our goal is to first map the structure of the basins in the Los Angeles area, and to integrate the basins’ structure into computer simulations of ground motion. As part of the BASIN project, we have deployed 744 nodal seismometers along 10 densely-spaced seismic profiles in the greater Los Angeles area.”

Podcast: Supercomputers Drive Ion Transport Research

In this TACC podcat, host Jorge Salazar discusses ion transport research with Amir Haji-Akbari, an assistant professor of chemical and environmental engineering at Yale University. “Scientists are using supercomputers to help understand the relatively rare event of salts in water passing through atomically-thin nanoporous membranes. This research could not only help make progress in desalination for fresh water; it has applications in decontaminating the environment, better pharmaceuticals, and more.”

Supercomputing Perovskite Solar Cells

In this special guest feature, Santina Russo from CSCS writes that scientists are using the “Piz Daint” supercomputer at CSCS to investigate a perovskite material for use in solar cells. “Solar cells made out of certain perovskite materials already exceed 22% efficiency in converting solar light to electrical energy under lab conditions, which is more than commercial silicon cells. However, not all perovskite materials exhibit such favorable properties, and the physics behind their photovoltaic performance is not yet fully known. Understanding these processes is important, since this will facilitate the design of new materials with favorable properties in the future.”

Breakthrough Coronavirus Research Results in New Map to Support Vaccine Design

Researchers from The University of Texas at Austin and the National Institutes of Health have made a critical breakthrough toward developing a vaccine for the 2019 novel coronavirus by creating the first 3D atomic scale map of the part of the virus that attaches to and infects human cells. “Mapping this part, called the spike protein, is an essential step so researchers around the world can develop vaccines and antiviral drugs to combat the virus. The paper was published Feb. 19 in the journal Science.”

HPE to Build Supercomputer for MWA Telescope in Australia

HPE has been selected by the Pawsey Supercomputing Centre in Perth to deliver a new $2 million compute cluster that will support one of the Square Kilometre Array precursor projects in Australia, the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) radio telescope. “The new 78-node cluster will provide a dedicated system for astronomers to process in excess of 30 PB – equal to 399 years of high definition video – of MWA telescope data using Pawsey infrastructure. The new cluster will provide users with enhanced GPU capabilities to power AI, computational work, machine learning workflows and data analytics.”

Video: Exploring the Dark Universe

“Heitmann discusses an ambitious end-to-end simulation project that attempts to provide a faithful view of the Universe as seen through the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), a telescope currently under construction. She also described how complex, large-scale simulations will be used in order to extract cosmological information from ongoing and future surveys.”