Stephen Hawking plans to use HPE’s supercomputer to solve the universe’s greatest mysteries

Stephen Hawking has teamed up with HPE to study the structure of the universe, black holes and gravitational waves using some of Earth’s most advanced computing power. 

Stephen Hawking plans to use HPE's supercomputer to solve the universe's greatest mysteries

Professor Hawking’s Centre for Theoretical Cosmology (COSMOS) and the Faculty of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge will use HPE’s Superdome Flex server alongside an HPE Apollo supercomputer and Intel Xeon Phi systems to delve into, and make sense of, the massive data sets already collected on the known universe and its expansion. 

 The computing heavyweights will help COSMOS, founded in 1997, test cosmological theory into gravitational waves, the cosmic microwave background, and the distribution of stars and galaxies.

The HPE Superdome Flex uses the principles of Memory-Driven Computing, featuring a pool of memory accessed by compute resources over a high-speed data interconnect, which seems to be central for HPE in future computing. The shared system design as well as the shared memory of the HPE Superdome Flex will help the researchers solve complex problems quickly and holistically while minimising the burden on code developers.

“Our COSMOS group is working to understand how space and time work, from before the first trillion trillionth of a second after the Big Bang up to today,” said Stephen Hawking, Director of Research in Cambridge’s Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics. “The recent discovery of gravitational waves offers amazing insights about black holes and the whole Universe.”

He added: “With exciting new data like this, we need flexible and powerful computer systems to keep ahead so we can test our theories and explore new concepts in fundamental physics.”

HPE hopes the supercomputer and its in-memory platform will not only help COSMOS discover the secrets of the universe but also help research in other fields, such as environmental and medical science.

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