Athena KVLCC2
News & Updates

Verification & validation, uncertainty quantification, and optimization will require large-scale computing resources. The accuracy of the CFD models and feasibility of performing extensive parametric studies and optimization depend largely on the computational resources available. Systematically refined meshes and time-steps for the thermal-fluid solvers are also required to quantitatively estimate the numerical errors and uncertainties. All these tasks require the use of hundreds or even thousands of processors. These will be completed using the supercomputer “Fission” at Idaho National Lab provided to the research team at University of Idaho for free. “Fission” is an Appro distributed memory system with 12,512 processors, 25 TBytes of memory, and an aggregate peak processing rate of more than 90 Tflops. This machine is ideal for large-scale parallel computations using many processors but has limitation on the memory per core (up to 2 GB/core). This was resolved by a recent award ($300,000) from the U.S. National Science Foundation to a team consisting of professors from multi-disciplines (Dr. Tao Xing is a Co-PI) at University of Idaho. The award was used to acquire an adaptive computation server for support of STEM research (BIG-STEM). The server has 160 processors, 2 Terabyte RAM, and 9.6 Terabyte Disk Space. Users can designate how much memory certain processors can use and thus significantly improve the capability and efficiency of post-processing and analyzing large size data. It has been installed and tested during fall 2013. The BIG-STEM has been successfully used to post-process and analyze large-scale CFD simulations (e.g. 28 Million points), which was not possible using local desktops due to memory limitations. The same team was awarded $240,000 by the Murdock Foundation in 2014 to purchase a second BIG-STEM machine with the same configuration. Additionally, the UI team owns the following workstations for small and medium scale computations: (1) Dell Precision T5610 CTO with 32 cores and 32 GB RAM, (2) DELL Precision T5600 with 24 cores, 16 GB RAM, and a GPU processor (NVIDA Tesla C2075), (3) DELL Precision T7500 with 12 cores and 48 GB RAM, (4) one Optiplex 780 with 4 cores and 8 GB RAM, and (5) two DELL Optiplex 990s with 8 cores and 8 GB RAM. The UI team also owns perpetual licenses for the most advanced software for grid generation (Pointwise & Gridgen) and CFD post-processing (Tecplot 360 2013).

Facilities in the Vorsana Desalter lab at UIME include high precision (±1% full-scale) conductivity/TDS/salinity meter with conductivity probe, one suction pumps (1 HP, 0-10 GPM discharge), two sump pumps (1/6 HP, 0-1.15 GPM); two flow control meters (0-10 GPM); one Ameritron High Gain RF Amplifier (1.20-1.26 MHz, up to 300 W), one RF Source AMW400DE (800 kHz – 1.8 MHz, up to 400 W), one digital oscilloscope (Tectronix TBS1052, 2-channel, 50 MHz, 1GS/s), One laser Optical Tachometer (1-99,999 RPM, Accuracy: ± 0.05%+1 Digit; resolution 1 RPM), variable resistor (0-1500 Ohms; 500 Watts), two variable capacitors (600V, 13pF/section – 466 pF/Section), two variable capacitors (1100V, 31pF/section – 1558 pF/Section).

Experimental measurement system can be also built at the Center for Applied Thermodynamic Studies (CATS) at UI. Existing facility include resistance measurement for platinum resistance thermometers (ASL F700 Precision Thermometry Bridge, ASL SB158 Switchbox Interface, ASL SB148 Multichannel Switchbox with 8 channels), temperature calibration equipment (Isotech Parallel Tube Liquid Bath Model 915, Rosemont Long-stem Standard Platinum Resistance Thermometer, Rosemont Short-stem SPRT), and pressure calibration equipment (DHI Dead Weight Tester) that can be used to calibrate pressure sensors from 85 psi up to several thousand psi.

Experimental study for aerodynamics can be performed using the subsonic wind tunnel in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University of Idaho (Figure 1 c,d). The wind tunnel is an open-loop air tunnel with a test cross section 18 inch by 18 inch. The length of the test section is about 36 inches long. The wind speed is adjustable up to 150 mph. Instrumentation include a wind speed indicator, several inclined manometers, hot-wire anemometer, Xenon-arc lamp to create light sheet for flow visualization, smoke wire, and strain gage type force balance (drag, lift, center of pressure, and pitching/yaw moment).