February 2006
International Cyberinfrastructure: Activities Around the Globe
Marco A Raupp and Bruno Schulze, National Laboratory for Scientific Computing, LNCC
Michael Stanton and Nelson Simões, National Research and Education Network, RNP


Long-distance, high-speed and low-cost networking has encouraged the development of applications taking advantage of geographically distributed resources, opening up new research directions that were previously limited or unexplored for economic and practical reasons. The establishment of Cyberinfrastructure allows mature, scalable computing for different application communities.

Grid initiatives in Brazil were initially driven by international collaborations in several application areas and the pursuit of higher network bandwidth and larger computational facilities. In response to this demand, the National Laboratory for Scientific Computing – LNCC headed a proposal formulated together with representatives of application groups, computer and computational science, computer networking, high-performance computing, and federal government funding agencies belonging to the Ministry of Science and Technology (MCT). This early proposal was based on a number of existing international initiatives and focused on improving connectivity and communication performance for the coordinated use of existing regional HPC centers, as well as a number of academic and research institutions as potential users. At this time there were seven regional HPC centers and nine academic and research institutions involved, with connectivity provided by the Brazilian National Research and Education Network – RNP, and funding by the MCT funding agencies. The application areas included high-energy physics, bioinformatics, climate and weather forecasting and oil industry needs, among others.

In 2003, the legal framework was established for a National System for HPC (SINAPAD) with LNCC being designated the national coordinator (on behalf of MCT), and was recognized as part of the Federal Education, Science & Technology infrastructure. SINAPAD consisted of a network of regionally distributed, operational HPC centers aimed at providing computation on demand for education and scientific purposes, with a proposed operational structure based on mid-sized computer systems and clusters organized into a grid for the sharing of resources and reduction of idle time. Clusters of a few hundred processors were planned for each center, combining distributed and shared memory machines, facilities for data storage and handling, user friendly access through a web portal, security, accounting, and the option of several alternative architectures.

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Reference this article
Raupp, M.A., Schulze, B., Stanton, M., Simões, N. "Cyberinfrastructure for Multidisciplinary Science in Brazil," CTWatch Quarterly, Volume 2, Number 1, February 2006. http://www.ctwatch.org/quarterly/articles/2006/02/cyberinfrastructure-for-multidisciplinary-science-in-brazil/

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