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Primeur weekly 2014-03-17

Exascale supercomputing

Addressing the Big Data challenge in radio astronomy ...

The Cloud

VMware launches VMware Horizon DaaS to enable simple and flexible delivery of desktops in the Cloud ...

Oracle showcases next-generation Cloud applications user experiences in Europe ...

EuroFlash

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Signal control with light frequencies ...

International research into controlled nuclear fusion (ITER project), gets more compute resources with expansion of the Helios supercomputer ...

The SKA takes off with GBP119 million contribution from the UK ...

USFlash

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NEC wins SEA-ME-WE 5 Contract to strengthen ultra-broadband undersea connectivity between Singapore and France NEC will deploy the segment from Singapore to Sri Lanka and co-contractor Alcatel-Lucent the segments from Sri Lanka to France ...

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VMware announces general availability of VMware Virtual SAN ...

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Mellanox Announces LinkX the most comprehensive product family of cables and transceivers for data Centre infrastructures ...

Industry leaders introduce OpenOptics multi-source agreement ...

Wipro partners with SGI for rapid growth in India ...

Addressing the Big Data challenge in radio astronomy


11 Mar 2014 Amsterdam - The big science questions facing the international radio astronomy community are extensive and profound. They range from exploring the evolution of the universe before the first stars were formed to studying spinning neutron stars (pulsars) that distort space-time for testing general relativity. The scientific enquiry is driving the development of state-of-the-art radio telescopes leading to an unprecedented barrage of data of the order of exabytes (1018 bytes) per day.

Currently, the computational technologies to handle such massive data volumes and rates are non-existent, and the roadmap to exascale computing is termed "disruptive" - unlike anything seen before. As the disruption propagates, perhaps for the very first time in the history of science, the research will be rendered unachievable without the essential computational backbone critically needed to process massive data rates and volumes.

Director of eScience Technology Rob van Nieuwpoort has been invited to speak at the Exascale Radio Astronomy conference in Monterey, USA, held 30 March to 4 April. The ERA conference provides a dynamic and interactive platform for international experts and enthusiasts from academic and industry backgrounds to introduce, explore, and discuss the scope and challenges of exascale radio astronomy.

Rob van Nieuwpoort is an expert in the field of high performance computing for radio astronomy; as a researcher at ASTRON he designed and developed software for the real-time data processing of the LOFAR software telescope, the largest radio telescope in the world. At the conference Rob van Nieuwpoort will present results from our eScience project Big Data for the Big Bang, in which a new development model for astronomical processing software is explored.

The research involves the following:

Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) mitigation is extremely important to take advantage of the vastly improved bandwidth, sensitivity, and field-of-view of exascale telescopes. For current instruments, RFI mitigation is typically done offline, and in some cases (partially) manually. At the same time, it is clear that due to the high bandwidth requirements, RFI mitigation will have to be done automatically, and in real-time, for exascale instruments.

In general, real-time RFI mitigation will be less precise than offline approaches. Due to memory constraints, there is much less data to work with, typically only in the order of one second or less, as opposed to the entire observation. In addition, the researchers can record only limited statistics of the past. Moreover, the scientists will typically have only few frequency channels locally available at each compute core. Finally, the amount of processing that can be spent on RFI mitigation is extremely limited due to computing and power constraints.

Nevertheless, there are potential benefits as well, which include the possibility of working on higher time and frequency resolutions before any integration is done, leading to more accurate results. Most importantly, the researchers can remove RFI before beam forming, which combines data from all receivers. The RFI that is present in the data streams from the separate receivers is also combined, effectively taking the union of all RFI. Thus, the RFI from all receivers pollutes all beams. Therefore, it is essential to do real-time RFI mitigation before the beam former. This is particularly important for pulsar surveys, for instance.

Although the techniques are generic, the research describes how the scientists implemented real-time RFI mitigation for one of the SKA pathfinders: The Low Frequency Array (LOFAR). The RFI mitigation algorithms and operations the scientists introduce here are extremely fast, and the computational requirements scale linearly in the number of samples and frequency channels. The researchers evaluate the quality of the algorithms with real LOFAR pulsar observations. By comparing the signal-to-noise ratios of the folded pulse profiles, the scientists can quantitatively compare the impact of real-time RFI mitigation, and compare different algorithms.
Source: Netherlands eScience Center

Back to Table of contents

Primeur weekly 2014-03-17

Exascale supercomputing

Addressing the Big Data challenge in radio astronomy ...

The Cloud

VMware launches VMware Horizon DaaS to enable simple and flexible delivery of desktops in the Cloud ...

Oracle showcases next-generation Cloud applications user experiences in Europe ...

EuroFlash

More secure communications thanks to quantum physics ...

Signal control with light frequencies ...

International research into controlled nuclear fusion (ITER project), gets more compute resources with expansion of the Helios supercomputer ...

The SKA takes off with GBP119 million contribution from the UK ...

USFlash

Big Data tackles tiny molecular machines ...

Cirrascale announces support for Intel Xeon processor E5-4600 v2 product family with VB2400 and RM2400 product lines ...

Technologies developed for providing flexible wide area networks with SDN, a global first ...

NEC wins SEA-ME-WE 5 Contract to strengthen ultra-broadband undersea connectivity between Singapore and France NEC will deploy the segment from Singapore to Sri Lanka and co-contractor Alcatel-Lucent the segments from Sri Lanka to France ...

NEC's latest SDN release increases scalability 10x with new Unified Network Coordinator (UNC) ...

VMware announces general availability of VMware Virtual SAN ...

Terascala releases latest version of groundbreaking high performance data movement solution ...

Supermicro announces Cluster-in-a-Box storage solution running Windows Storage Server 2012 R2 standard edition ...

Supermicro spotlights extreme density, ultra low power 6U 112-node microblade and advanced computing technologies ...

'Ultracold' molecules promising for quantum computing and simulation ...

Quantum physics secures new cryptography scheme ...

Mellanox Announces LinkX the most comprehensive product family of cables and transceivers for data Centre infrastructures ...

Industry leaders introduce OpenOptics multi-source agreement ...

Wipro partners with SGI for rapid growth in India ...