News Release from U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)


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Department of Energy’s Newest Energy Research-Dedicated Supercomputer Arrives at NREL

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced this week that installation of the new high-performance computing (HPC) system, Kestrel, has begun.

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Kestrel will advance energy technologies spanning multiple Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) programs and deliver transformative energy solutions more than five times that of EERE’s current HPC, Eagle. Both computers housed at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado are used for several various computer simulations and modeling like optimizing locations within disadvantaged communities for new electric vehicle charging infrastructure or modeling atomic and electronic behavior to assist improvements in solar cell manufacturing.

Supercomputers like Kestrel are critical to the energy transition,” said Acting Assistant Secretary Alejandro Moreno. “Kestrel will enable the EERE research community to apply cutting-edge simulations and harness artificial intelligence to advance affordable, reliable clean energy technologies at the scale we need to reach our country’s climate and energy goals.”

Kestrel will play a critical role in computing across the research portfolio, advancing research in computational materials, continuum mechanics, and large-scale simulation and planning for future energy systems. Rapidly advancing applications and technologies in artificial intelligence and machine learning are fostering innovation and expansion of research into new computing workflows in which data-driven approaches complement physics and fuse simulation with new sensor data sources. Kestrel’s heterogeneous architecture—which includes both CPU-only and GPU-accelerated nodes—is designed to enable these emerging workflows, providing EERE with the ability to tackle the energy challenges five times faster than yesterday, towards a renewable and sustainable future.

Kestrel is built by Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) to be fully compatible with the warm-water waste heat recovery system currently used in NREL’s Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF) data center where it will complement Eagle during the transition. This week’s arrival marks the beginning of the first phase of the Kestrel build—once phase one is complete, Kestrel will be fully operational and able to support research. Phase two, comprising the graphics processing unit (GPU)—or “accelerator”—nodes, will be added to Kestrel this fall.

With the Kestrel HPC system in progress, NREL remains poised to continue delivering critical energy efficiency and renewable energy advancements with its HPC-supported capabilities.

U.S. Department of Energy
Press Office
USA, Department of Energy, supercomputer, Kestrel, installation, EERE, HPC, Eagle, energy transition, research, simulations, climate goal

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