Upgraded supercomputer brings power to students and researchers

The University of Reading has upgraded its supercomputing facility to become reportedly the most powerful academic supercomputer in the UK.

Scientists at the university will be able to harness the increased power for research into air pollution modelling, climate change, financial modelling, drug discovery, computational biology and meteorology. The increased number of computations will improve both the accuracy and speed of the computer models used in these areas.

Chris Guy, head of Systems Engineering at the University said: ‘More accurate predictions in each of these areas, as a result of better modelling, will enable us to make real changes to people’s lives by, for example, showing where flood defences should be built or speeding up the development of life-saving drugs.’

In addition to being the UK’s most powerful academic computer, the University’s Advanced Computing and Emerging Technologies (ACET) Centre IBM supercomputer is also the second most powerful computer in the UK overall – second only to the supercomputer at nearby AWE in Aldermaston.

Since 1999, IBM has had close links with Professor Vassil Alexandrov, the University’s leading expert on computational science and director of the University’s ACET Centre.

Professor Alexandrov said: ‘The possibilities of use for this computer are endless.’

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