Gustavo Caetano-Anolles

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Molecular Biosciences

NCSA Grants $2.6M in Blue Waters Awards to Illinois Researchers

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has awarded 3,697,000 node hours (NH) of time on the Blue Waters supercomputer to Illinois researchers from Spring 2017 proposal submissions.The combined value of these awards is over $2.6 million dollars, and through the life of the Blue Waters program, NCSA has awarded over 43 million node hours to UI researchers—a value of nearly $27 million. Some of the time allocated for Blue Waters will go to projects that focus on HIV research, Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) simulations, genomics and global warming research..

18 general, 9 exploratory allocations on Blue Waters awarded to Illinois researchers

Eighteen researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign received allocations on the Blue Waters petascale supercomputer at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA). A portion of available time on Blue Waters is reserved for University faculty and staff projects like these that require the system’s unique capabilities.Ten of the awards will continue projects already running on Blue Waters, related to a wide variety of topics like tornadoes, steel casting, and cell function, among others. Eight allocations are for new projects..

22 Illinois projects receive time on Blue Waters

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has awarded access to the Blue Waters supercomputer—which is capable of performing quadrillions of calculations every second and of working with quadrillions of bytes of data—to 22 campus research teams from a wide range of disciplines.The computing and data capabilities of Blue Waters, which is operated by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), will assist researchers in their work on understanding DNA, developing biofuels, simulating climate, and more..

Caetano-Anollés' study sheds light on origins of life on Earth

In the primordial soup that was early Earth, life started small. Elements joined to form the simple carbon-based molecules that were the precursors of everything that was to come. But there is debate about the next step.One popular hypothesis suggests that ribonucleic acid (RNA) molecules, which contain the genetic blueprints for proteins and can perform simple chemical reactions, kick-started life. Some scientists refute this idea, however, saying RNA is too large and complex a molecule to have started it all. That group says simpler molecules had to evolve the ability to perform metabolic functions before macromolecules such as RNA could be built. This idea is appropriately named "metabolism-first," and new evidence out of the University of Illinois backs it up..