BOSTON--Boston University here has joined the National Computational Science Alliance, a group working to build a network of many of the world's most advanced computers, in an effort to further research in several complex fields, including bioinformatics. As part of its membership, the school will establish a regional center of high-performance computing resources, work with other partners to develop the technologies required to build an advanced distributed computing environment, and play a central role in coordinating education and outreach activities for the alliance. It will also serve as a testing site for new alliance-developed software.
To prepare for membership in the group, the university added 128 processors to its Silicon Graphics Origin 2000 system, giving it a total of 192 processors. The new regional center, known as the Mid-level Alliance Resource in the North East Region (Mariner), will offer training and access on the Origin 2000 and will create and maintain a web-based repository of training materials, benchmark data, and software tools. The alliance is funded by the National Science Foundation's Partners for Computational Services initiative.