Science Highlights-Fall17

Welcome to the Fall 2017 Edition of Science Highlights.

The Best Thing Since Sliced Bread

Zebrafish Study Reveals First Fine Structure of a Complete Vertebrate Brain.

Despite decades of stunning advances in imaging the brain and measuring its activity, we still don’t understand how even a simple vertebrate brain works. To this end, researchers at Harvard and PSC used PSC-developed software and hardware to create a 3D map of the zebrafish larva brain—the first whole vertebrate brain so reconstructed. Read more…

figure13A Picture is Worth a Thousand…Dollars

CMU B School Researchers Use Bridges to Unpack How Photos Help Sell Property

It’s not hard to believe that when you advertise a property, a good picture will help you sell or rent it. What isn’t so clear is what factors make for a good picture and how much each of these factors contributes to the bottom line. Using PSC’s Bridges, researchers at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon have created a computer program that identifies these elements and shows how to present a photo for the best sales impact. Read more…




Synergistic Voyage

ECSS Collaboration Speeds, Expands Microrobotic Simulations

PSC helped Carnegie Mellon University researchers rewrite their software for simulating microrobots, enabling them to move the program to the supercomputing environment and helping them test many more ideas than possible by creating physical robots to test every idea in the labRead more…


Anthraquinone acsv.svgThe Future is STEM

High School Students Use Bridges as Intro to Supercomputing

To prepare its students for higher-paying, computationally savvy jobs in science and industry, the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics has obtained time on the XSEDE-allocated Bridges supercomputer at PSC for its high-school chemistry students. Read more…





Choice Works

PSC Models Show Value of Vaccine Choice in Fighting Flu

Less than half of children and adults under age 65 get vaccinated for influenza. Researchers at PSC, the University of Pittsburgh and Soongsil University in the Republic of Korea used PSC supercomputers to simulate the effects of offering different types of vaccination—the familiar injected vaccine or two types of “needle sparing” vaccines. Their results suggest that such a choice would reduce flu cases and make vaccination more cost effective. Read more…

Abalone farm1webBlue Acres

PSC, XSEDE Support Gene Assembly of Key Aquaculture Species

Commercial abalone aquaculture—farming the shellfish in enclosures—has exploded over the past decade, becoming a $100-million global industry. Understanding the DNA of the abaloneis key to improving and expanding its aquaculture for California producers. That’s why scientists at Iowa State University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration worked with PSC experts to assemble the DNA sequences of several species of abalone on the Bridges supercomputer. Read more…

buriedcavity forT4lysInner Space

Anton Simulations Uncover Importance of Empty Space for Protein Function 

Experiments can detect chemical changes on a scale as short as about a thousandth of a second. Most supercomputers can only simulate complex biomolecules for as long as a few millionths of a second. Scientists at the University of California, San Diego used the D.E. Shaw Research Anton supercomputer at PSC to understand what happens in that thousand-fold gap, between the snippets we understand from computer simulations to the longer responses we see when a protein, say, encounters a drug. Read more…



IMG 0536PSC News in Brief