Researchers now have open access to the most advanced, powerful and robust collection of integrated advanced digital resources and services in the world through a $121 million National Science Foundation project.
The Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment involves a partnership of 17 institutions to create a global network of computers, data and people to establish a single, virtual system that scientists can interactively use to conduct research directly from their desktops.
“Enabling scientific discovery through enhanced researcher productivity is our goal, and XSEDE’s ultimate reason for being,” stated Barry Schneider, a program director in NSF’s Office of Cyberinfrastructure, in a press release. “For this sort of cyberscience to be truly effective and provide unique insights, it requires a cyberinfrastructure of local computing hardware at sites around the country, advanced supercomputers at larger centers, generally available software packages, and fast networks. Ideally, they should all work together so the researcher can move from local to national resources transparently and easily.”
XSEDE replaces and expands the TeraGrid project that started more than a decade ago through which more than 10,000 scientists completed thousands of research projects at no cost to the scientists. The project will reportedly enable the same accomplishments with more detail and in a broader range of fields and include outreach to new communities that have not traditionally used cyberinfrastructure and other digital services.
The XSEDE partnership includes: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Carnegie Mellon University/University of Pittsburgh; University of Texas at Austin; University of Tennessee Knoxville; University of Virginia; Shodor Education Foundation; Southeastern Universities Research Association; University of Chicago; University of California, San Diego; Indiana University; Jülich Supercomputing Centre (Germany); Purdue University; Cornell University; Ohio State University; University of California, Berkeley; Rice University and the National Center for Atmospheric Research. The University of Illinois’s National Center for Supercomputing Applications leads the project.