With SC22 in the rearview mirror, it’s time to get back to the 2022 Great American Supercomputing Road Trip. To refresh everyone’s memory, I jumped in the car on November 3rd and headed towards SC22 in Dallas, stopping to conduct interviews at national labs along the way.
So far, I’ve covered Pacific Northwest National Lab, Idaho National Lab, NCAR, and NREL with articles and video interviews.
Next up in the order is Los Alamos National Laboratory. I have the great fortune to have booked Irene Qualters, Associate Lab Director for Simulation and Computation. What can you say about Irene that hasn’t already been said? She’s unquestionably a big time thought leader in HPC. She’s held key positions in the private sector with her work at Cray, Merck, and SGI, and crossed over to the public sector with her posts at NSF and Los Alamos.
Speaking for myself, I could spend hours (and hours) just learning what she’s discovered in her long and storied career, but we didn’t have time for that. We had an interview to conduct, and she had a plane to catch.
During the interview, we discussed a wide range of topics including how the lab is currently faring with Tycho (soon to become Crossroads). This will be a very large performance increase over their current fastest super, named Trinity, which, for comparisons sake, can perform a particular lab simulation in six months. With Crossroads, a HPE cpu-only system, the lab expects to see this same simulation completed in six weeks. There’s also another system on the horizon, Vernado, which will be highly accelerated.
We also talked about their innovative use of warm gray water to cool the new system, which is a new one on me. This will help the lab in that gray water has fewer chemicals (who knew?) and is better for the equipment. Not having to chill the water will result in significant power savings.
Check out the interview below. We had a good time recording this interview and it’s a great look at where the lab is today and where they’re going tomorrow in terms of computation.