ANU Supercomputer Facility - Annual Report 1998


Staff, Conferences and Travel


ANU Supercomputer Facility Staff

Using funds earned from earlier industrial consultancies and support from the Research Infrastructure Block Grant (RIBG), Stuart Ramsden continued his secondment from ACAT as a Visualization Programmer.

Dr Thomas Huber joined the Fujitsu Area 3 project team replacing Dr Limaye who transferred to the Vizlab, also supported by RIBG funds. Mr Gavin Mercer worked in a half-time position as program librarian/software engineer in the Fujitsu Parallel Mathematical Library Software development project for part of the year. Shuping Ran left the ANU in July.

Associated Staff

Dr Stephen Greatbanks continued as a postdoctoral fellow in the Computational Molecular Modelling and Drug Design group, led by Dr Gready, JCSMR, and worked on the Fujitsu Computational Chemistry project led by Dr Rendell, ANUSF. An APA(I) supported PhD student, Stephen Titmuss commenced in February. Dr Schranz joined the project staff in December, after Dr Limaye transferred to the Visualization Laboratory.

Dr Kahn continued her management and participation in the collaborative project with Fujitsu Limited in Parallel Mathematical Library Software development. Dr Dow also continued contributing algorithms and code. Drs Bing Zhou, David Harrar and Lutz Grosz (SMS) continued working on the project. An APA(I) supported PhD student Mr Geoff Keating, RSISE, continued his involvement with the project.

These projects are described elsewhere in this report.

Training and Development, Conferences Attended and Talks Presented

Given the unusual and quasi-academic skills required of many of the Facility's staff, suitable development and training is often available only through attendance at conferences and workshops, sometimes necessarily overseas. Papers were presented at most conferences attended. Details of these are listed in the publications section of this report.

Ben Evans attended the Fujitsu VPP Special Interest Group and Siemens SAVE User Group meeting 21 -27 March in Munich and the University of Karlsruhe. He also visited the Fujitsu European Centre for Information Technology and the European Centre for Medium-term Weather Forecasting in the UK. He attended the Australian Society for General Relativity and Gravitation Conference 6-11 July at the University of New South Wales. He gave a talk to the Canberra Linux Users Group on 22 October on Beowulf Linux Clusters.

Drs Gingold and Rendell attended the Fujitsu International User Group's annual meeting, FISUM7 in Toulouse from 3-6 November. Following this meeting Dr Rendell made an extensive trip to Europe and the USA to a number for supercomputer centres and software vendors relevant to the Fujitsu Area 3 Computational Chemistry project.

Dr Gingold attended the premier international high performance computing conference, SC'98 in Orlando from 9-13 November. He briefly attended the 12th International Conference on Supercomputing held in Melbourne on 17 July.

Several staff attended the ANZIAM one-day seminar on Computational and Applied Mathematics 3 December.

Dr Kahn attended the workshop on Numerical Methods for Large Scale Systems of Equations, 16-20 November at the Australian National University.

Dr Bliznyuk attended the Fourth Australian Molecular Modelling Workshop, July 19-22, Sydney and the 34th Symposium for Theoretical Chemistry 20-24 September, Gwatt-Zentrum at Lake Thun, Switzerland. He also visited the Fujitsu European Centre for Information Technology, UK at that time.

Dr Huber made a poster presentation at the Third Meeting on the Critical Assessment of Techniques for Protein Structure Prediction, CASP3, Asilomar Conference Centre, California, 13-17 December. He attended the Fourth Australian Molecular Modelling Workshop, July 19-22, Sydney where he gave a paper entitled Protein structure guesstimation by fold recognition and hierarchical optimisation. He visited the University of California, San Francisco, Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry where he gave a seminar on Protein structure prediction: The refined and the uncouth, on 10 December.

Dr Gardner attended the following conferences and meetings where he gave the listed talks:

Gaseous Electronics Meeting, Sydney, 28-30 Jan, The WEDGE Virtual Reality System (with R Boswell).

Working with Knowledge - International Archives Conference, Canberra, 6-7 May, The Wedge Data Visualisation System.

Conference on Computational Physics, CCP1998, Granada, Spain, 3-5 Sept, invited talk Computational Physics, Computational Engineering and Computer Science: How physicists can reach out to other areas of the curriculum. This talk was also given at Springer Verlag, Tiergartenstr 17, Heidelberg, Germany, 15 September.

HPC Asia'98 Conference, Singapore 22-25 September, Effective Virtual Environments - Experiences with a Low Cost Immersive System (with R Boswell).

CIEMAT Institute, Avenida Complutense, Madrid Spain, 9 September, The WEDGE virtual reality theatre.

City University, Dublin, Ireland, 11 September 11, invited talk, The Computational Science and Engineering Education Program at the Australian National University.

GMD/IMK Institut, Schloss Birlinghoven, St Augustin, Germany 15 September), The WEDGE Immersive Projection Theatre.

ANZIAM Annual General Meeting, The WEDGE Virtual Reality Theatre, 27 November.

During his September trip, Dr Gardner also visited the Grauenhofer IGD Instute Rundeturmstr, the Guggenheim Art Museum (regarding the Puppy Sculpture described in the Facility's 1997 Annual Report) and the Max Plank Institute for Plasma Physics, Garching.

Drs Limaye and Rendell attended the XII International Conference on Computers in Chemical Research and Education, 5-9 January at the University of Pune, India. Dr Rendell was an invited speaker on Hybrid quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical calculations using Fujitsu Parallel Supercomputers and Dr Limaye gave a paper on Performance and Tuning of Gaussian 94 for Fujitsu Parallel Supercomputer.

Dr Rendell visited Fujitsu Japan from 25-29 March and again from 27 September to 2 October for discussions about the Area 3 Computational Chemistry project.

Mr Whitehouse attended the Australian Effects and Animation Festival Conference from 18 - 20 March in Sydney and assisted the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney with the WEDGE display at FutureScreen on 4 December.

In November Mr Whitehouse attended the "Immersive Conditions" forum at the Powerhouse Museum.

Other Travel

Dr Gingold accompanied Professor Stanton on a visit to Fujitsu Ltd in Kawasaki, Japan in 29 June - 3 July to discuss future technologies.

Visitors to the Facility and other travel supported

Professor Sid Karin, Director of the National Partnership for Advanced Computational Infrastructure visited the Facility. He gave a presentation at the invitation of Chairman of the Interim Board of the National HPCC Centre of Expertise and Professor Terrell entitled The Importance of High Performance Computing and Communications to National Economic Development on 8 July.

The Facility also supported the visit to the ANU of Professor Yousef Saad, Computer Science Department, University of Minnesota and in particular his participation in the workshop Numerical Methods for Large Scale Systems of Equations 16-20 November.

The Facility also supported the attendance of Professor P Kollman, University of California at the Fourth Australian Molecular Modelling Workshop, 19-22 July in Sydney.

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