ARSC Announces Cluster Computing Technology

For Immediate Release 12 January 2006

The Arctic Region Supercomputing Center announces the availability of new cluster computing resources. These resources are designed for users with smaller jobs, who may not need larger supercomputing systems, or for post-processing needs. ARSC’s current cluster systems include:

  • A 108 Opteron processor Cray XD1
  • An IBM Intellistation image generator
  • A 6-node Opteron Processor Sun

Each of these cluster systems is already hosting innovative projects. The Cray XD1 is being used to compute operational weather forecasts for weather modeling by University of Montana professor Don Morton. The 5- and 7.5-kilometer-resolution model output is being supplied to the National Weather Service for consideration in their daily forecasts.

The IBM image generator was used to create an application called VRCussion, which integrates sound and interactive visualization in the three-dimensional computer environment of the ARSC Discovery Lab. The end result is an instrument that can be played in virtual reality taking advantage of the advanced sound and visualization capabilities of the lab.

The SunPC cluster is currently being used by computational chemists at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. The group is using an application called DMol3, which uses both classical and quantum mechanical models of chemical processes to analyze chemical interactions and structures.

Over the coming months, ARSC’s cluster systems will be put to use in many ways, including as a research tool during a March MATLAB® Symposium at ARSC, and as support for the Access Grid Node during the University of Alaska’s upcoming Internet2 Day. These systems are available to users with a valid ARSC account. For information about how to obtain an account, visit , or to learn about current projects at the center, read our science annual Challenges .

Arctic Region Supercomputing Center PO Box 756020, Fairbanks, AK 99775 | voice: 907-450-8600 | email:

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