AEI presents the latest possibilities of grid computing and Einstein@Home from 10-16 March 2005 at CeBIT

March 09, 2005

The Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute, AEI) has established itself as the German centre of excellence for computer research. During CeBIT, the institute will present the latest possibilities of grid computing as well as Einstein@Home at the booth of the German government and invites to the Computer simulation of a collision of two black holes on Sunday, 13 March 2005 at 14:00 at the Future Parc, Hall 9, Stand B 43

What happens when two black holes collide and merge? Scientists at the AEI have calculated this cosmic catastrophe on the basis of Einstein's equations and made it visible with the help of numerical simulations. This requires enormous computing capacities, which are made possible with the help of grid computing - the efficient use of globally distributed computer resources - and will be demonstrated at CeBIT. The simulation of the collision of two black holes is controlled via the GridSphere Portal developed at AEI, and the resulting data is visualized online.

The AEI has a leading role in the development and optimization of grid computing. Within the framework of the GridLab project (http://www.gridlab.org) funded by the European Commission, core technologies such as the Grid Application Toolkit, the Gridsphere Portal Framework (http://www.gridsphere.org), and the modular software package Cactus (http://www.cactuscode.org) are being developed at the AEI. The GridLab project is one of the largest European research projects with the goal of developing applications and middleware for grid computing. The dynamic use of computer resources focuses on optimal distribution and monitoring, data management, security and information.

Einstein@Home - Distributed computing in the service of astrophysics

Einstein@Home (http://einstein.phys.uwm.edu) offers an exciting and accessible approach to basic astrophysical research for everyone. It is one of the most important projects in the World Year of Physics, which was proclaimed by the United Nations. Einstein@Home makes it possible to integrate a worldwide PC network in the search for gravitational waves. Private users can make their computer resources available to gravitational wave researchers during "idle times" to evaluate the enormous amounts of data from the German-British gravitational wave detector GEO600 in Ruthe near Hannover and the three American LIGO detectors. Computer capacities are needed that cannot be covered even by the largest supercomputers currently available. However, hundreds of thousands of home computers can provide this computing power.

Since the launch of Einstein@Home on February 19, 2005, more than 50,000 users from 111 countries have already registered and provided a total of 2.5 million CPU hours.

Both Einstein@Home and grid computing are important tools that can be used to continue the fields of research founded by Albert Einstein and open up entirely new windows on the universe. In particular, it is now necessary to answer the last remaining open question about the direct detection of gravitational waves.

We are happy to provide further information and illustrations.

Contact persons at CeBIT

for grid computing and numerical simulations
Robert Engel, engro@aei.mpg.de
Frank Herrmann, herrmann@aei.mpg.de
Michael Russell, michael.russell@aei.mpg.de

for Einstein@Home
Bernd Machenschalk, bernd.machenschalk@aei.mpg.de

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