back to article World's mightiest supercomputer to design new nuke plants

Nuclear supercomputer boffins in the States say they are unleashing the mighty power of the "Jaguar" - number one arse-kickingest computer in the world - to design the next generation of nuclear reactors, including the ITER fusion project. John Wagner, Technical Integration Manager for Nuclear Modelling at the Oak Ridge …


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  1. Mr Grumblefish

    Dammit, why can't they work on something important

    like Facebook apps? </sarcasm>

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yeah but.....

    Can it play tic tac toe?

  3. Mark Forster

    Not that impressive of an award!!!!

    Wagner and Evans are chuffed to announce that they have been awarded eight million processor hours on Jaguar for the purpose of running Denovo to develop a "uniquely detailed simulation of the power distribution inside a nuclear reactor core". This is expected to cut years off the process of designing new and better reactors.

    8 000 000 hours / 224 000 processors = 35.7142857 hours total

    unless I'm missing something?

    1. BristolBachelor Gold badge
      Black Helicopters

      The machine still has to pay its way

      Obviously the rest of the time, the machine will be doing what it was bought for; modelling the decay of nuclear weapons to know when they will need to be refurbished, or modelling new versions of them so that they pack more punch for their size?

    2. Britt Johnston

      run time savings

      Don't forget to subtract the time lost in rewriting the program from scratch.

  4. Thomas 18

    whats a processor hour?

    Does it mean if your computer has 6 processors you are allowed to have your program running for 10 seconds? Is it measured by cores or processors?

    If they have a million billion hours why don't they just get their own computer instead.

  5. Anonymous Coward

    How many

    CPUs does Iran operate ? And Brazil ?

  6. Thomas 4


    Anyone else awaiting the obligatory "can it run Crysis" comment?

    Oh wait.

    1. Goat Jam


      Too busy wondering what a Beowulf cluster of those would be like.

  7. jai


    so the first ITER is expected to be of use in 2050?

    i'll be in my 70s by then

    and that's just the first one, in France, so by the time we then get around to building one here in the uk i'll have popped my clogs and will never know what it's like to live in a world where energy is free and the only worry is the occasional panic when the containment field breaks down and rolling ball of fusion breaks loose and melts down a city

    this Jaguar had better cut an awful lot of years of the R&D - i don't want to still be paying for petrol during my 40s damnit!

    1. Chemist

      Re : depressing

      You think energy is going to be FREE ?!

    2. Ammaross Danan


      40 years assuming a "major" breakthrough doesn't happen in the mean-time.

  8. Graham Marsden

    A mere abacus...

    ... mention it not.

    - Signed Deep Thought

  9. Paul Johnston
    Thumb Down

    Ah Nuclear Fusion

    The future solution to all the problems of our energy needs.

    And it always will be in the future, when you think of the money spent on it over the last 60 years amazing it's always just around the corner!

  10. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    Fusion. The power source of the future

    Always has been.

    Let me guess "ITER is not *quite* as big as we'd thought we'd need to actually *demonstrate* break even but if we build one *jut* 3 times a big we'll be there. Honest."

    Still I doubt we will *ever* run short of Plasma Physics PhD's.

  11. Steve Dulieu

    Hang On...

    ...Jaguar, Denovo, are we talking HPCs or RFTs here?

    Cheers, Steve.

  12. Thorne Kontos 1

    Let's talk about nuclear plant manufacturing first

    The "latest and greatest" nuclear plant designs coming out of Westinghouse is the AP1000.

    The first 4 of these are going to China

    and construction has only just started with first power-up slated for 2013.

    Two in the United Stated are planned for construction in the state of Georgia

    On August 15, 2006, Southern Nuclear formally applied for an Early Site Permit (ESP) for two additional units. The ESP will determine whether the site is appropriate for additional reactors, and this process is separate from the Combined Construction and Operating License (COL) Application process.[10] On March 31, 2008, Southern Nuclear announced that it had submitted an application for a COL, a process which will take at least 3 to 4 years.[11] On April 9, 2008, Georgia Power Company reached a contract agreement for two AP1000 reactors designed by Westinghouse (owned by Toshiba) and the Shaw Group (Baton Rouge, LA).[12] The contract represents the first agreement for new nuclear development since the Three Mile Island accident in 1979, and received approval from the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) on March 17, 2009.[13] As stated by a Georgia Power spokesperson Carol Boatright: "If the PSC approves, we are going forward with the new units."[

    But red tape appears to be rearing its ugly head:

    New nuclear power generation in the United States - 2017 if you read the above article.

  13. Konrad K
    Paris Hilton

    @Thomas 4

    Exactely what I am waiting for, too... LOL

    Paris Hilton, because she exactely knows how to deal with crysis... maybe

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