NSF PR 99-15 - March 15, 1999
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NSF Funds New High-Speed Network Connections
Program Now Reaches Institutions
In Every State
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded
16 grants, worth a total of $6.3 million, to allow
19 universities to connect to the advanced high-performance
computer networks that will constitute the Internet
of the future.
The new two-year grants bring to 150 the number of
high performance connection grants awarded by NSF's
Advanced Networking Infrastructure (ANI) program.
The number of connections exceeds by 50 NSF's original
goal for this part of President Clinton's Next Generation
Internet (NGI) initiative.
"I am delighted to announce that every state in the
nation is participating in the Next Generation Internet,"
said Vice President Al Gore. "This will allow researchers
all over America to make breakthroughs in science
and engineering -- such as more accurately predicting
tornadoes and developing life-saving drugs more rapidly."
Thirty-three of the 150 awards were made to institutions
in 18 states in NSF's Experimental Program to Stimulate
Competitive Research (EPSCoR). EPSCoR focuses on states
that historically have received less federal research
and development funding.
William F. Decker, ANI program director, noted that
the new grants also mark an important cooperative
milestone between government agencies that will advance
NGI. For example, in collaboration with the Department
of Defense, NSF will allow the University of Hawaii
to afford a link to the U.S. mainland at a fraction
of commercial rates, noted David Lassner, the university's
director of information technology services.
Recipients will use the grants to benefit research
in a variety of fields. At the University of Hawaii,
Lassner said, the link will be used extensively, including
taking the first steps to allow astronomers around
the world to use telescopes atop Mauna Kea remotely
in "real time."
The University of Alaska, Fairbanks will use its link
to serve as a conduit for distributing networked information
from the continental U.S. to the state's sparsely
populated interior, noted Frank Williams, director
of the university's Arctic Region Supercomputing Center.
The connection also will allow researchers to collaborate
with institutions nationwide to refine predictions
of the weather in the ionosphere which affects the
reliability of satellite communications.
High-speed connectivity for Florida International
University will help researchers there develop an
Internet "server" that will allow forecasters to combine
data from multiple sources to improve hurricane forecasting,
according to Naphtali Rishe, the director of the university's
High-performance Database Research Center.
Researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno, meanwhile,
will be able to connect to supercomputers at federal
research labs to model the complexities of the distribution
of contaminants in groundwater, including possible
materials from the Nevada nuclear test site, noted
Steve Zink, associate vice president for information
resources and technologies.
A joint grant to the University of Arkansas-Little
Rock and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
will provide UAMS doctors access to a variety of leading-edge
medical diagnostic tools and UALR researchers the
ability to connect to powerful, though remote, supercomputers,
said Keith Hudson, the university's assistant dean
for research. But just as importantly, he added, the
university's enhanced research capabilities may provide
an incentive to technology firms to consider relocating
nearby, sparking economic growth. "Arkansas is just
not a very rich state," he said. "To bring this capability
to Little Rock has the potential to really provide
Attachment: List of High
Performance Computing recipients
LIST OF HIGH PERFORMANCE COMPUTING RECIPIENTS
- Case Western University
- Desert Research Institute (Nevada)/University
of Nevada, Reno/University of Nevada, Las Vegas*
- Florida Atlantic University
- Florida International University
- George Mason University
- Michigan Technological University
- Ohio University
- Southern Methodist University
- University of Arkansas-Little Rock/University
of Arkansas for Medical Sciences*
- University of Akron
- University of Alaska Fairbanks
- University of Connecticut
- University of Georgia
- University of Hawaii
- University of Louisville
- University of Vermont
* joint grants