HPCVL Executive Director Ken Edgecombe
The High Performance Computing Virtual Laboratory (HPCVL), based at Queen’s, has won the ORION Discovery Award. The ORION awards recognize international research innovations and collaborations that are transforming surgery and medical training and taking research, teaching and learning to the next level in virtual environments.
“It came out of the blue,” says HPCVL Executive Director Ken Edgecombe, who doesn’t know who nominated the lab for the award. “We’re always looking to renew funding or gain new funding, so winning the award will definitely help us attract some attention and gain more credibility.”
HPCVL was founded in 1998, and provides researchers with access to systems that can store, process and analyze their data, as well as perform intricate mathematical calculations that would take years to perform on a standard computer.
“The whole purpose was to try to ensure that researchers had the resources to go beyond what they could do themselves,” says Dr. Edgecombe of the laboratory.
HPCVL boasts a cluster of fast and powerful Sun computers totaling a petabyte – 1 million gigabytes – of storage. Five universities and three colleges are partners in the laboratory, which provides researchers with the secure HPC resources they need to do innovative research. HPCVL also provides storage resources and support for more than 130 Canadian research groups, comprising 800 researchers who work in a variety of fields.
Dr. Edgecombe accepted the ORION award in Toronto on April 12 during ORION Summit 2010, a two-day research and education conference.