‘Swan’ to Expand, Accelerate Computing Resources for NU Researchers, Students | News

The legacy of David Swanson continues to support student and faculty research through the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Holland Computing Center, which is located on UNO’s Scott Campus in the Peter Kiewit Institute.

In May, the center launched Swan, a new supercomputer providing cutting-edge resources at no cost to researchers, instructors, and students across the University of Nebraska System. The supercomputer is named in honor of Swanson, the founding director of the Holland Computing Center, who was killed in a two-vehicle wreck in rural Minnesota in 2019.

Swan is multiple times faster than its predecessor, Crane. It features more than 8,000 Intel-based computer cores, an enhanced level of graphics processing capacity and more than 5 petabytes (equivalent to 5 million gigabytes) of storage.

“David had a phrase, ‘time to science,’ that he liked to use in our discussions,” said Adam Caprez, applications lead with the Holland Computing Center. “And, our hope is that Swan will accelerate or reduce the amount of time our users have to wait for results.

“Swan also will push the boundaries of research being pursued on our campus, providing necessary resources that enable cutting-edge areas of study.”

Funding for Swan was provided through the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Office of Research and Economic Development and the Nebraska Research Initiative, a State of Nebraska focus to expand research that enhances economic growth.

Design and deployment of Swan was supported by the Holland Computing Center’s systems team (led by Garhan Attebury) and applications team (led by Caprez). It was also shaped by Nebraska U researcher input gathered through various avenues, including the Office of Research and Economic Development’s research data listening sessions.

“Swan expands the Holland Computing Center’s resource offerings and will accelerate our research partners’ rate of discovery,” said Hongfeng Yu, interim director of the center and an associate professor of computing. “And, we welcome use by any Nebraska-based investigator, including all the campuses within the NU system.”

For more information about Swan and how to access the computing resource, visit the Holland Computing Center online or send an email to hcc-support@unl.edu.