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July 3, 2014

Dell HPC Services Selected by ICBA

July 3 — Dell has announced that the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA) in Dubai has deployed Dell High Performance Computing (HPC), Dell Services, and Dell SonicWALL security solutions as part of its mission to build a computing system that will support analyses of the impact of climate variability and change on water and agriculture in the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region.

As part of ICBA’s MAWRED project (Modeling and Monitoring Agriculture and Water Resources Development), funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), ICBA is collaborating with NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre (NASA GSFC) and selected U.S. university experts to use the Weather Research and Forecasting system (WRF) to downscale climate data at regional and local scale.

These climate data are then used as input for NASA GSFC furnished Land Information System models, operating at ICBA, to understand the likely impacts on water and agriculture in the MENA region. This information will help local government ministries and public organisations in their management of water and agricultural resources decisions, and assist vulnerable communities in the region through improved drought management and response. It will also help in making decisions on water allocation among other sectors, such as industry and households.

ICBA is a world-class research facility with a team of international scientists conducting applied research to address the water related issues improving the agricultural practices in the water scarce arid environments. The organisation has a particular interest in dealing with problems using saline water for irrigated agriculture. Their central aim is to tackle the complex challenges of water, nutrition and food security in a region, which is under a continuous threat of declining water resources.

ICBA has also engaged Dell Services for full ongoing support, as well a security plan to address the organisation’s specific security requirements. As part of this, ICBA has deployed SonicWALL Next Generation Firewall NSA 3500, which integrates intrusion prevention, malware protection, and application intelligence and control with real-time visualization, as well as Dell SonicWALL Email Security ES3300.

Dave Brooke, General Manager, Dell Middle East, said, “The International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture undertakes incredibly important work to improve water management in the MENA region and help the most vulnerable in society. We are delighted to have been selected to implement an HPC solution as well as support their in-house team with security solutions andservices.”

“Technology is absolutely essential to our ability to deliver information to governments and public bodies which potentially leads to life-changing results. The implementation of Dell’s HPC solution is key to our ability to analyse vast amounts data which can be used to improve the lives of people in the MENA region. Our in-house IT team is small, so as well as best-of-breed technology we were also looking for a partner which could offer support through responsive services. We are delighted to partner with Dell which has previous experience of WRF modelling and offered a robust and scalable end-to-end solution,” said Dr. Rachael McDonnell, Water policy and governance scientist, ICBA.

Source: Dell

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