Wyoming will soon have a new supercomputer that ranks among the fastest in the world. This computer will help monitor phenomena like severe weather, wildfires, solar flares, and climate change events. This is a great way to utilize tech to prevent loss of life, as knowing about these events in advance can help states and municipalities be well prepared for these types of disasters.
New Super Computer to Be Built
Hewlett Packard Enterprise, based in Houston Texas, won the bid to provide an almost $40 million machine for a super computing center in Cheyenne. This was recently announced by the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. This center has teamed up with federal labs, government facilities, universities, and private facilities to help discover scientific answers for problems affecting the natural world. They focus on everything from climate change to predicting lightning storms, and super computers help them every step of the way.
The new super computer should be able to perform as many as 20 quadrillion calculations a second. This makes it almost 4 times faster than the agency’s existing machine, and is the equivalent of every person on the planet doing a math equation per second for 30 days.
This power will help create some of the most advanced simulations of natural disasters and human influence events. This is a great resource, allowing workers and volunteers to have advance warning about disasters before they occur, so that preemptive action can be taken.
This specific super computer should be one of the fastest in the world after it’s set up this year. It’ll start being utilized early in 2022.
History of Supercomputers
In the 1960s, IBM created the very first mainframe computer to be used by the government and large corporations — the IBM 360. At the time, System 360 included central processors with 19 combinations of memory capacity and speed.
Electricity travels at 6,696,000 mph. Most computers are designed to use around 400 kilowatts of power per hour, but often use less. An average sized CPU uses about as much electricity per hour as a light bulb. The larger the computer and the more powerful it is, the more electricity it uses. This investment is typically well worth it for the companies and universities utilizing super computers of this size.
Supercomputers are computers that function at the cutting edge of data processing and calculation speed. They’re perfect for solving engineering and scientific problems. Mainframes, on the other hand, focus on processing simple transactions.
Supercomputers and Education
Over 4,000 individuals from hundreds of educational facilities have used the Cheyenne supercomputing center since it was opened in 2012. This has made it an amazing resource for education.
The facility’s current supercomputer is named Cheyenne and is more than three times as fast as the computer before it, which was named Yellowstone. This personalization allows users to personalize the computers a bit, seeing them as the valuable assets that they truly are.
There will be a contest among children in Wyoming schools to name the new supercomputer, helping to choose the perfect name to cement it in everyone’s minds as the important resource that it is.
Supercomputers are a vital resource for both education and disaster management, helping scientists and educators alike make important progress. Having the tech on hand to see natural disasters and human influenced events before they cause loss of life is, obviously, a major benefit. Government agencies on a federal and local level can put these simulations to work, using them to inform their disaster planning. This will help minimize the loss of life, ensuring that as many people as possible can be evacuated before a dramatic weather event, natural disaster, or climate change event occurs.