NSF MRI PHY 1040231

The Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) forms part of a world-wide network of gravitational-wave observatories poised to explore the Universe using gravitational waves. The Large Hadron Collider beauty (LHCb) experiment uses colliding beams of high-energy particles to explore conditions just after the Big Bang and understand the matter-antimatter asymmetry seen in the universe today. Both of these fundamental science projects need massive amounts of computing to accomplish their scientific goals. This award supports the design, construction and commissioning of a high-throughput computing cluster for gravitational-wave astronomy and high-energy physics. Scientists from the Syracuse Gravitational-wave Group will use the cluster to develop sensitive data-analysis algorithms which will enable the direct detection of gravitational waves with the Advanced LIGO detectors and will allow us to extract the astrophysical information encoded in the detected signals. Members of the Syracuse High Energy Physics Group will use the instrument to search LHCb data for physics beyond our current understanding of fundamental particles, and to design the next generation of b-physics detectors.

Postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students in the Syracuse gravitational-wave and high-energy physics groups will be involved in the instrument development and the research enabled by this award, gaining valuable training in cutting-edge computational skills. The instrument developed through this award will establish a LIGO Tier-2 compute center at Syracuse University. This facility will be available to all members of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, a large, diverse organization with many members from minority-serving institutions and underrepresented groups. This award will further develop the nation’s cyberinfrastructure by enabling collaboration between two physics communities which are dependent on high-throughput computing to accomplish their scientific goals. The cluster will be housed in the new Syracuse University Green Data Center, stimulating public interest in the instrument, as well as astronomy, astrophysics and high-energy physics.

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