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[] Army supercomputing program shows off its work,


Army supercomputing program shows off its work 

By Patricia Daukantas  GCN Staff

High-end computing research is more than an academic application of
technology, Defense Department and intelligence officials said
yesterday-it's an important element of domestic defense. 

U.S. leadership in supercomputing is crucial to national security, said
George R. Cotter, director of the National Security Agency's Office of
Corporate Assessments. He spoke at a luncheon hosted by the Army
High-Performance Computing Research Center and Cray Inc. of Seattle. 

"Modeling and simulation should be a part of every major weapons system
program" in DOD today, Cotter said. Even the fastest high-performance
computers, which can perform several trillion floating-point operations
per second, still don't have enough power to model detailed interactions
of planes and ships with the turbulent flow of air and water around

In signals intelligence and code analysis, "man has not conceived of a
computer too powerful for our needs," Cotter said. 

Consumer rather than research needs drive the U.S. high-end computing
industry, which still has not developed a successor to silicon-based
processors, Cotter said. 

Claude M. Bolton Jr., assistant Army secretary for acquisition,
logistics and technology, showed results from a simulation of tungsten
projectiles hitting body-armor plates. The projectile penetrated more
deeply into a simulated steel plate than into a plate made of ceramic
and aluminum layers. 

Changes in demographic trends, combined with the impending retirement of
many scientists and engineers in the baby-boomer generation, mean that
fewer young researchers are in the academic pipeline, said Kofi B. Bota,
director of Clark Atlantic University's Research Center for Science and

Bota, who serves on the policy board of the Army supercomputing center,
described several internship programs at Army research centers and
challenged other federal agencies to expand their graduate fellowship

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