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University of Manchester heads up HPC network

The University of Manchester is heading up a large interdisciplinary network focusing on numerical algorithms and high-performance computing. Co-ordinated by Professor Nick Higham and Professor David Silvester of the School of Mathematics, and funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the network aims to support interaction and collaboration between UK numerical analysts, computer scientists, and developers and users of software and HPC.

The scheme will run from May 2011 to April 2014 and include interaction between research groups across the UK, short courses and workshops, and training of research students and postdoctoral researchers. The six initial ‘nodes’ in the network are The University of Manchester, Numerical Algorithms Group (NAG), Centre for Numerical Algorithms and Intelligent Software (NAIS), The University of Oxford, Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and University College London (UCL).

Its first workshop, ‘Advances in High Performance Scientific Computing’ held at the School of Mathematics, featured speakers from Queen’s University Belfast, Imperial College London, The University of Bristol and The University of Leeds. ‘This is an exciting opportunity to bring together numerical analysis and computer science researchers with scientists and engineers who use numerical software for high performance computing,’ commented Professor Higham. ‘The major challenges are to develop new numerical algorithms for analysing increasingly large and complicated mathematical models and to build associated software that exploits multicore processors, which are often used with graphics processing units or field-programmable gate arrays as accelerators.

‘By partnering with some of the leading research groups in the UK in academia and industry, we intend to establish the network, and The University of Manchester, as a focal point for internationally-leading research in numerical algorithms and HPC,’ Professor Higham concluded.

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