San Diego Supercomputer Center


San Diego Supercomputer Center photo available at Wikimedia CommonsThis is the eighth article in a series of weekly articles I am writing about the Science Institutes that line the Torrey Pines Mesa. As you may have gathered by now, one-by-one, new institutes were being created on the Torrey Pines Mesa. Heading into the 1980s, this gathering collection of world class institutes, employing many of the greatest scientific minds around, became a magnet for other researchers and organizations who wanted the opportunity to exchange ideas and collaborate on developing new scientific discoveries.  When a growing mass of individuals and organizations work in close proximity, it is shown that the sum is greater than its individual parts.   Not only is there an exchanging of ideas and collaboration among scientists, but there is also a network of suppliers and organizations that develops in the local area to further support the scientists.  San Diego was now on its way to developing a world-recognized biotech cluster.

In 1985, this development got a boost with the creation of the San Diego Supercomputer Center at UCSD.  A Supercomputer is needed to perform complex calculations that can not be done by your simple desktop computer.  Instead of talking about gigabytes when it comes to working with a computer on your desk, you need to be talking about teraflops and now pentaflops when it comes to working with supercomputers.  Most supercomputers are owned and operated by governments and universities.  Companies and researchers then request time to run their calculations on a supercomputer.

Most supercomputer centers operate multiple supercomputers.  These supercomputers can then be used together to help perform even more complex calculations.  When that’s not enough computing power, some supercomputer centers, including the San Diego Supercomputer Center, belong to a cluster of Supercomputer Centers.  One such cluster is the TeraGrid.  The San Diego Supercomputer Center was one of the four original centers to participate in the TeraGrid, which was launched by the National Science Foundation and now includes nine Supercomputer Centers.

The San Diego Supercomputer Center is a huge benefit for researchers and the biotech institutes along the Torrey Pines Mesa and is just another reason that attracted other institutes to set-up shop in San Diego.  Stay tuned every Wednesday to learn more about the organizations that now make up one of the most respected biotech clusters in the world.

San Diego Supercomputer Center Information

San Diego Supercomputer Center Resources

Directions from Google Maps to 10100 Hopkins Drive 92039

Visitor and Parking Information

Take a tour of the San Diego Supercomputer Center at 3PM the first Thursday of every month (except November and December).  Advanced Reservation required.

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