UK environmental science supercomputer gets upgrade

UK environmental science supercomputer gets upgrade

The UK’s environment science supercomputer gets an upgrade, to double the storage that is on offer to the department.

With the upgrade, the JASMIN system will be able to support the global analysis of the next generation of climate models and enable UK academia and industry to exploit Earth observation data.The system integration is being led by STFC SCD, and the software and data management by Space’s Centre for Environmental Data Analysis (CEDA).

JASMIN is jointly managed by RAL Space’s CEDA, part of the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), and Scientific Computing Department (SCD), on behalf of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), all based within STFC at Harwell campus in Oxfordshire.

The supercomputer enables the UK and European climate and earth-system science communities to access very large sets of environmental data and process it rapidly, reducing the time it takes to test new ideas and get results. Additionally,  the upgraded system will continue to provide the UK environmental data commons – an online collaborative space bringing together data, services and expertise – underpinning much of academic environmental science.

The upgrade will double the storage to more than 44 petabytes, which is the equivalent to more than 10 billion photos. The upgrade also add 40% to the processing capability, with 11,500 cores on 600 nodes, similar to adding the power of several thousand high-end laptops.

Upgrading the supercomputer and enhancing the storage capacity will allow the 1,700 registered users of JASMIN will be able to process and analyse big data sets simultaneously and in very little time.

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JASMIN currently supports more than 160 science projects, with users conducting research on topics ranging from earthquake detection and oceanography to air pollution and climate science. The supercomputer launched six years ago with just 4.5 petabytes of storage, revolutionising access to data for the environmental science community in the UK.

In a release, CEDA said that The upgrade is expected to take many months. Completion is expected by the end of 2018.