The Blanca cluster offers a dynamic environment for contributors. One of the contributors who will utilize the new HPC nodes is Professor Kurt Maute. Dr. Maute is part of the Aerospace Mechanics Research Center (AMReC) at the University of Colorado Boulder Engineering and Applied Science College, and is researching physics design optimization with an emphasis on its applicability to the aerospace industry.

In his research, Dr. Maute develops methods for solving PDEs, specifically multi-physics and multifunctional models. Using the models Dr. Maute can predict and optimize the performance of a design. These models are valuable in the advanced fabrication world that exists today, as designs may be optimized at a micrometer resolution and then scaled up. This has implications for both weight and functionality.

Multifunctional materials designed using Dr. Maute’s models can be tailored to multiple needs of the user. For example, in aerospace and other industries, there is often a demand for rigid metals that are good insulators. This is not an innate quality of many metals, but changes at the micrometer scale can adjust the material to fit those needs. 

These models can create intricate designs, and the complexity of the models require computational resources such as those provided by Blanca HPC. For instance, a single design may have thousands of iterations with each iteration having ten million degrees of freedom and five million design variables. With that level of complexity local workstations are out of the question, so Dr. Maute is contributing to the Blanca cluster. The Blanca environment means Dr. Maute can run many iterations for longer periods of time with high core counts as well as easier debugging on the nodes. 

According to Dr. Maute, the transition from his former computing environment to Blanca has gone smoothly. His old cluster utilized AMD cores but he claims to have zero issues porting code to Intel systems and accredits much of this to sticking to C++ standards.

Research Computing is excited to welcome Dr. Maute and his team of researchers at the AMReC to Blanca. If you are interested in learning more about what the Blanca cluster has to offer or other Research Computing services please visit our website or email us at rc-help@colorado.edu.