Southern California Earthquake Center Receives Award for Best Use of High-Performance Computing in Science

THE ANGELS, November 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The awards ceremony took place on tuesday 16 november, Bee 20:00 ET, at the International Conference for High-Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis (SC21)

The Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC), located in the University of Southern California, has won the HPCwire Editors’ Choice Award for “Best Use of HPC in the Physical Sciences”, selected by a panel of HPCwire editors and opinion leaders in the world of high-performance computing (HPC). For decades, SCEC researchers used HPC sources to simulate how the ground would shake after major earthquakes in California. These simulations allow experts to evaluate how earthquakes (large and small) affect the built environment and help decision-makers and communities best prepare for survival and recovery. Announced at the 2021 Supercomputing Conference (SC21), the HPCwire price recognizes the significant contributions of dozens of researchers and computer scientists collaborating under the SCEC umbrella to advance earthquake science.

“Access to HPC systems is critical to enabling us to advance earthquake science on multiple fronts,” said Dr. Christine Goulet, Executive Director for Applied Science at SCEC. “Major earthquakes are unpredictable and rare, but they can turn an entire region upside down in minutes. SCEC researchers are developing computer models to improve our understanding of earthquake processes and associated ground movements. We test our models against available data to maintain our simulation capabilities to support greater seismic resilience.”

To run these simulations at the required scale and level of complexity, SCEC uses the largest and fastest HPC systems available to researchers through the National Science Foundation’s XSEDE and Ministry of Energy STAKE assignment programs. In 2021 alone, SCEC used HPC systems such as:Frontera andStampede2 from the Texas Advanced Computing Center,Bridges-2 of the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center, as well as theta andMeeting of the Argonne and Oak Ridge Leadership Class Facilities, respectively. The HPCwire price was mainly motivated by this year’s series of calculations, completed on Frontera that generated earthquake sequences around the world California and ground movement products for specific events.

“Every year we are delighted to connect with and honor the HPC community through our Readers’ and Editors’ Choice Awards, and 2021 marked an exceptional display of industry innovation,” said Tom Tabor, CEO of Tabor Communications, publisher of HPCwire. “Between our global readership of HPC experts and an unparalleled panel of editors, the Readers’ and Editors’ Choice Awards represent a resounding recognition across the industry. Congratulations to all the winners.”

More information about the HPCwire Readers’ and Editors’ Choice Awards can be found on the HPCwire website ( or on Twitter using the hashtag #HPCwireAwards.

Jason Ballmann
Communication Manager
Earthquake Center in Southern California

The Earthquake Center in Southern California (SCEC) is headquartered in the University of Southern California (USC) and supported by the National Science Institute (NSF) and the US Geological Survey (USGS). SCEC studies why and how earthquakes occur, evaluates their effects, and helps societies prepare for survival and recovery. Learn more:



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SOURCE Southern California Earthquake Center

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