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Blue Waters Supercomputer Projects

The National Science Foundation is soliciting proposals Link to external Web site for research time on the Blue Waters petascale computing system. This system, which is being constructed by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois, will be the most powerful supercomputer in the world when it comes online in 2011. Details of the capabilities and architecture of the Blue Waters computing system are available at Link to external Web site.

Each year, NSF expects to allocate computing time to 10-12 projects that simply cannot be performed on any other available computing resources, including the existing TeraGrid. The awards include an allocation of computing time ranging from a few weeks to six months spread out over two or three years (according to need) and provide access to NCSA staff consultants, system emulators and up to $40,000 in travel funds to facilitate the development of applications. The receipt date for applications is March 17, 2010, and annually thereafter.

To encourage the use of the supercomputer for research relevant to the NIGMS mission, we are facilitating the assembly of investigators to develop several high-impact, community-based proposals. The goal of the proposals is to engage many NIGMS grantees or potential grantees in solving problems that can only be explored with this new, powerful computing resource.

Scientific areas of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Protein structure prediction from sequence
  • Prediction of protein-ligand and protein-protein interactions
  • Modeling of macromolecular complex structures by combinations of experimental methods
  • Simulation of enzymatic mechanisms and their coupling to macromolecular dynamics
  • Analysis and simulation of biological systems of material and information processing
  • Genetics of genes, proteins, organisms and populations, and their evolutionary pathways
  • Patterns of infectious disease communication and development of resistance

To help develop these proposals, we will host a videocast workshop. See below for more details.

Videocast: Virtual Workshop and Applicant Briefing

NIGMS-NSF Briefing on Blue Waters High-Performance Computing Opportunities
Thursday, December 17, 2009
2:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Drs. Jeremy Berg (Director, NIGMS), Stephan Meacham (Program Director, NSF), Eric Jakobsson (University of Illinois), Thom Dunning (University of Illinois) and John Moult (University of Maryland) will lead a virtual workshop to discuss opportunities for scientists to access resources of the NSF-funded Blue Waters petascale computing system.

The virtual workshop will:

  • Inform NIGMS grantees and potential applicants about the Blue Waters computer system;
  • Alert them to the NSF call for proposals to receive computing time on the system;
  • Identify areas of science within the NIGMS mission that may benefit from access to these computing resources; and
  • Assist interested scientists in forming collaborations and submitting proposals.

Because of NIGMS’ substantial investment in protein folding—through both its basic program of investigator-initiated R01 grants and the Protein Structure Initiative—the videocast initially will discuss opportunities to use Blue Waters for protein structure prediction from sequence, and then turn to other areas.

If you would like to submit other ideas or topics for the live discussion before or during the videocast, e-mail Peter Preusch. You also may submit questions and comments during the videocast by sending an e-mail through the "Question and Comment" link next to the videocast link on the NIH videocast page. To remain anonymous, include the word "ANONYMOUS" in the subject line of your message.

View the briefing presentation slides from Thom Dunning (PDF, 10MB).

This page last reviewed on January 16, 2014