As researchers race to identify and unleash new scientific breakthroughs to combat the COVID-19 outbreak, the Energy Department’s Summit supercomputer is playing a role in the fight.
Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where Summit is housed, recently granted researchers emergency computation time to run through a database of existing drug compounds to see which combinations might prevent cell infection of COVID-19. The research is still ongoing, but with the help of Summit, scientists were already able to perform simulations that resulted in outputs that they believe will help pave the way for new, necessary experimentation to support researchers on their quest for a cure.
Jeremy Smith, Governor’s Chair at the University of Tennessee and director of the UT/ORNL Center for Molecular Biophysics, as well as experts from IBM and NVIDIA (companies that provide underlying technological components that help power Summit) recently briefed Nextgov on the work.
“Summit is the world’s most powerful supercomputer and was needed to rapidly get the simulation results we were looking for,” Smith said.