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Bibliotheca Alexandrina Supercomputer Open Day

Alexandria, 11 July 2012:   As a continuation for its support for researchers, and offering the adequate platform for advancing science and technology, the ICT sector at Bibliotheca Alexandrina organized “Supercomputer Open day event/LinkSCEEM-2 User Meeting Roadshow”, for raising awareness about the use of Supercomputers in research.

The event aimed at introducing the audience to the High Performance Computing concepts and the Supercomputer project at the BA, and its integration within LinkSCEEM project (Linking Scientific Computing in Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean), which mainly aims at reinforcing the research output in the Mediterranean basin. There were also a general introduction to LinkSCEEM and its resources, an overview of available HPC systems and software available within LinkSCEEM, a description of the training program of LinkSCEEM and an introduction to its various training events and its available funded fellowships. Discussions also tackled a thorough explanation of how people can access the HPC resources available through LinkSCEEM for the purpose of their scientific research projects.

Dr Magdy Nagi, ICT Sector senior consultant at the BA explained, “Through the EU-funded initiative LinkSCEEM, the BA now offers new horizons for scientific research in Egypt and the region, thus we target raising the awareness of researchers to the use of HPC reaching out to universities and research centers in the Arab region and putting them on the internationally prevailing trends of scientific research in the world today.” He added, “having this in mind, we intend to go further in offering trainings and technical support for our research calibers when using the supercomputer and VISTA facility for free.”  

The event attracted researchers from different universities such as Alexandria, Cairo, Ain Shams and Sinai representing different scientific fields such as Computer Science, Medicine, Science and Agriculture. It included several presentations and open discussions regarding High performance Computing cluster, and its applications in research. In addition, the attendees were introduced to VISTA facility at the BA (Virtual Immersive Science and Technology Applications) and its synergic role in research where it allows visualizing the research output in a 3D simulation thus developing new insights and more profound understanding to the subject of their research. The day also included a hands-on session which gave the participants a real-time experience with the use of supercomputer.

The BA Supercomputer project is the outcome of the collaboration between the BA and the Egyptian Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT) to support researchers, especially in the Arab region, and enhance scientific research. The Supercomputer is a High Performance Computing cluster (HPC). It represents a valuable tool for researchers replacing the traditional computational methods used in research, as it operates at a rate of trillions of calculations per second giving optimum and accurate results.

Moreover, participants were introduced to the different digital initiatives of the BA through “Our Digital World” exhibition at the BA, such as the Print on Demand facility, and Digital Assets Repository and Science Supercourse project, and others.  The exhibit will be open soon for public.