Purdue University is receiving $10 million from the National Science Foundation for a new supercomputer that will provide advanced computing capabilities. The university says Anvil will support a wide range of computational and data-intensive research spanning from traditional high-performance computing to modern artificial intelligence applications.
Purdue says Anvil will enter production in 2021 and will serve researchers for five years. Additional funding from the NSF will support Anvil’s operations and user support.
“Purdue has a long history as a national leader in campus supercomputing, and this award reflects that track record. High-performance computing is crucial to discovery in all domains today – solving problems in agriculture to sustainably feed the world; in life sciences to understand and cure disease; and in engineering to support our national competitiveness,” said Theresa Mayer, Purdue’s executive vice president for research and partnerships.
Purdue says Anvil will significantly increase the capacity available to the NSF’s Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment, in which Purdue has been a partner for the past nine years.
By building Anvil alongside its community cluster supercomputers, including the 2020 “Bell” system being built for the West Lafayette campus, Purdue says it will leverage its existing campus computing infrastructure. The university says it has deployed 14 large supercomputers since 2008 that serve thousands of researchers and students each year.
“The name ‘Anvil’ reflects the Purdue Boilermakers’ strength and workmanlike focus on producing results, and the Anvil supercomputer will enable important discoveries across many different areas of science and engineering,” said Preston Smith, Purdue’s executive director of research computing.
Smith says Anvil will also serve as an experiential learning laboratory for students to gain real-world experience using computing for their science, and for student interns to work with the Anvil team for construction and operation.