Argonne National Laboratory

Feature Stories

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The Argonne-led <em>Multiscale Coupled Urban Systems</em> project aims to help city planners better examine complex systems, understand the relationships between them and predict how changes will affect them. The ultimate goal is to help officials identify the best solutions to benefit urban communities. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Exascale and the city

The Argonne-led Multiscale Coupled Urban Systems project will create a computational framework for urban developers and planners to evaluate integrated models of city systems and processes. With this framework, city planners can better examine complex systems, understand the relationships between them and predict how changes will affect them. It can ultimately help officials identify the best solutions to benefit urban communities.

October 16, 2017
Recently, 70 scientists — graduate students, computational scientists, and postdoctoral and early-career researchers — attended the fifth annual Argonne Training Program on Extreme-Scale Computing (ATPESC) in St. Charles, Illinois. Over two weeks, they learned how to seize opportunities offered by the world’s fastest supercomputers. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Leaning into the supercomputing learning curve

Scientists need to learn how to take advantage of exascale computing. This is the mission of the Argonne Training Program on Extreme-Scale Computing (ATPESC), which held its annual two-week training workshops over the summer.

October 6, 2017
This shows the HACC cosmology simulation, which combines high spatial and temporal resolution in a large cosmological volume. The high temporal resolution tracks the evolution of structures in great detail and correlates formation histories to the environments in which the structures form. (Image courtesy of Silvio Rizzi and Joe Insley/Argonne Leadership Computing Facility/Argonne National Laboratory.)
Cartography of the cosmos

There are hundreds of billions of stars in our own Milky Way galaxy, interspersed with all manner of matter, from the dark to the sublime. This is the universe that Argonne researcher Salman Habib is trying to reconstruct, structure by structure, combining telescope surveys with next-generation data analysis and simulation techniques currently being primed for exascale computing.

September 25, 2017
A simulated sky image of galaxies produced by running Argonne-developed high-performance computing codes and then running a galaxy formation model.  Argonne has collaborated with the University of Illinois, teaming up two supercomputers to perform simulation and data analysis of extremely large-scale, computationally intensive models of the universe. (Image by Lindsey Bleem, Nan Li, and the HACC team/Argonne National Laboratory; Mike Gladders/University of Chicago.)
Big Bang – The Movie

In a new approach to enable scientific breakthroughs, researchers linked together supercomputers at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF) and at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

August 24, 2017
Above: 3-D structures of adenine riboswitch RNA calculated using RS3D, a computer program that runs on the supercomputer Mira. RNAs like adenine riboswitch are biological structures found in all human cells; they help control how and when genes are expressed. Some of these structures are linked to cancer and other diseases, and by using RS3D to learn more about them, researchers can better understand how associated diseases evolve, which could lead to better treatments or cures. (Image by Wei Jiang, Argonne National Laboratory; Yuba Bhandari and Yun-Xing Wang, National Cancer Institute.)
Tackling disease in three dimensions: supercomputers help decode RNA structure

In collaboration with staff from the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility, researchers at the National Cancer Institute have perfected a technique that accurately computes the 3-D structure of RNA sequences. This method, which relies on a computer program known as RS3D and supercomputer Mira gives researchers studying cancer and other diseases structural insights about associated RNAs that can be used to advance computer-assisted drug design and development.

July 12, 2017
This image is a small portion of an output from the "Q Continuum" cosmology simulation; the full simulation evolves more than half a trillion particles. Exascale systems will further enable researchers to run advanced simulations like this to shed more light on the key ingredients that make up our universe. (Image courtesy of the Hardware/Hybrid Accelerated Cosmology Code (HACC) team.)
How to build software for a computer 50 times faster than anything in the world

Researchers at Argonne are working to create new and adapt existing software technologies to operate at exascale by overcoming challenges found in several key areas, such as resiliency, data reduction, software libraries and the management of memory, power and computational resources.

June 15, 2017
Chick Macal, Jonathan Ozik and Nick Collier (not shown) received the DOE Secretary’s Appreciation Award for their advanced modeling research on how an Ebola outbreak might affect U.S. cities. Pictured above (from left) are: Paul Kearns, Chick Macal, Jonathan Ozik, Joanna M. Livengood and Dmitri Kusnezov. (Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)
Department of Energy Secretary recognizes Argonne scientists’ work to fight Ebola, cancer

Two groups of researchers at Argonne earned special awards from the office of the U.S. Secretary of Energy for addressing the global health challenges of Ebola and cancer.

May 18, 2017
The researchers integrated X-ray imaging with computer modeling and simulation to characterize zinc oxide nanoparticles, which have attractive electrical properties for use in technologies. Shown above, from left to right, are co-authors Mathew Cherukara, Ross Harder, Haidan Wen and Kiran Sasikumar. (Image by Mark Lopez/Argonne National Laboratory)
X-ray imaging and computer modeling help map electric properties of nanomaterials

Argonne researchers have developed a new approach for studying piezoelectric materials using ultrafast 3-D X-ray imaging and computer modeling. Their integrated approach, reported in Nano Letters, can help us better understand material behavior and engineer more powerful and energy-efficient technologies.

May 4, 2017
Electrical power plants are often built near bodies of water because the water can be used for cooling, but this proximity to water can also leave plants vulnerable to natural threats, such as flooding. Argonne is helping utilities better manage this dynamic by supplying them with superior climate data and world-class infrastructure planning and decision support. (Image by Shutterstock/leungchopan.)
New effort by Argonne helps power utilities and others better plan for the future

If you’re an electric utility planning a new power plant by a river, it would be nice to know what that river will look like 20 years down the road. Will it be so high that it might flood the new facility? Will the water be so low that it can’t be used to cool the plant? A new initiative by Argonne combines climate data and analysis with infrastructure planning and decision support to offer real help.

May 4, 2017
THEN (1963): Illinois governor Otto Kerner visits the Zero Gradient Synchrotron, which accelerated protons to 12.5 billion electron volts. From left: Lee C. Teng, Particle Accelerator division director, Governor Kerner, and Roger Hildebrand, associate laboratory director for High Energy Physics. Teng and Hildebrand are showing the governor the 110-foot linear accelerator.
Science, then & now

Last year Argonne celebrated its 70th anniversary. Here’s what state-of-the-art science facilities looked like decades ago when Argonne was a fledgling laboratory—and what their descendants look like now.

April 3, 2017