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Video: Supercomputing the Secrets of Giant Stars

In this video, supercomputing power and algorithms help astrophysicists untangle giant stars’ brightness, temperature, and chemical variations. “As a star becomes redder (and cooler), it becomes more variable. That’s a pretty firm prediction from what we’ve found, and that’s going to be what’s exciting to test in detail.”

Video: Antarctic Ice Sheet Simulations

In this video, the DOE SciDAC-funded BISICLES experiment investigates the millennial-scale vulnerability of the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) due solely to the loss of its ice shelves. Starting at the present-day, the AIS evolves for 1000 years, exposing the floating ice shelves to an extreme thinning rate, which results in their complete collapse. The visualizations show the first 500 years of the simulation — after that point, the ice sheet continues to evolve and retreat, but less dramatically.

Balancing the Load – A Million Cores in Concert

“If you’re doing any kind of parallel simulation, and you have a bit of imbalance, all the other cores have to wait for the slowest one,” Junghans says, a problem that compounds as the computing system’s size grows. “The bigger you go on scale, the more these tiny imbalances matter.” On a system like LANL’s Trinity supercomputer up to 999,999 cores could idle, waiting on a single one to complete a task.

Argo Project Developing OS Technology for Exascale

Today’s operating systems were not developed with the immense complexity of Exascale in mind. Now, researchers at Argonne National Lab are preparing for HPC’s next wave, where the operating system will have to assume new roles in synchronizing and coordinating tasks. “The Argo team is making several of its experimental OS modifications available. Beckman expects to test them on large machines at Argonne and elsewhere in the next year.”