SMU-led research team awarded $2 million DOE grant

Goal is to develop algorithms that improve complex energy systems

DALLAS (SMU) – SMU is leading a team that includes the Ohio State University, the University of Southern California and Argonne National Laboratory in a $2 million U.S. Department of Energy research project that will address problems in the broad area of computational mathematics for sustainability – such as management of the power grid under intermittent renewable power.

SMU professor Harsha Gangammanavar, assistant professor in the Operations Research and Engineering Management Department in the Lyle School of Engineering, is leading the multidisciplinary team.

The Department of Energy announced the SMU grant as one of four included in the $8.5 million package for basic research in the development of randomized algorithms for understanding and improving the properties and behavior of complex energy. The research aims to develop new algorithms for materials design, bio-engineering and power grid applications.

“Our principal goal is to study randomization-based (stochastic) computational optimization algorithms and new analysis techniques, enabling us to support solutions for problems far beyond our capabilities today,” Gangammanavar said.

Barbara Helland, DOE Associate Director of Science for Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) said through the grant announcement, “Innovative approaches are needed to accelerate the time to solution for a wide range of challenges in science and energy research. The development of randomized and other classes of algorithms is important for enabling scientific advances and high-performance computing.”

The ASCR program coordinates research directed at research based on high performance computing to solve the nation’s most pressing energy, climate change and human health problems. Gangammanavar’s team will use SMU’s high performance computing system, specifically enhanced with an NVIDIA DGX SuperPODTM, as well as the supercomputing resources at Argonne National Laboratory to assess the performance of randomized algorithms and ultimately implement those compatible with a high-performance computing environment.

“Dr. Gangammanavar’s ability to marshal a multi-disciplinary team of researchers from several universities while leveraging SMU’s capabilities in data science and supercomputing isa sterling example of SMU’s commitment to generate research with impact,” said SMU Provost Elizabeth G. Loboa. “The contributions his team will make as a result of this grant will address real-world challenges, both now and into the future.”




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