Center for Computing Research (CCR)

Center for Computing Research


Karen Devine awarded the Society of Women Engineers 2019 Prism Award

Karen Devine has been awarded the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) 2019 Prism Award.  According to SWE, "the Prism Award recognizes a woman who has charted her own path throughout her career, providing leadership in technology fields and professional organizations along the way."   Karen has been deservedly awarded this honor based on her contributions as a “computer science researcher, project leader, customer liaison, mentor and STEM outreach advocate.”  Her contributions in delivering algorithms and high-quality software that improve the performance of engineering simulation codes at Sandia are particularly noteworthy.

Karen has been a trailblazer for open-source software practices and policies in Sandia.  Now her software is “used in national laboratories, industry, and universities world-wide, with 4500+ downloads of just one of her software libraries.”  Karen has demonstrated “strong and effective leadership of small software teams, multi-million dollar projects across many national laboratories, local STEM service projects, and international professional societies.”  Karen will be presented with the Prism Award at SWE’s WE19 conference on November 7.

Karen Devine, 2019 SWE Prism Award Winner

Contact: Wolf, Michael
November 2019

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Astra Supercomputer Team Wins NNSA Defense Programs Award of Excellence

The Astra Supercomputer Team was recently awarded an NNSA Defense Programs Award of Excellence “For excellence in design, acquisition, and integration of the Astra prototype System.” These prestigious annual awards are granted to National Security Enterprise teams and individuals across the NNSA complex to recognize significant contributions to the Stockpile Stewardship Program. The Astra team was one of two Sandia teams to receive an Exceptional Achievement Award at a recent ceremony that recognized a total of 31 teams and three individuals from Sandia. The team successfully delivered the first advanced prototype system for NNSA's Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) Program, moving from requirements definition, through acquisition to delivery, integration, and acceptance of the large-scale computing system in less than twelve months. The Astra system is the world’s largest and fastest supercomputer based on Arm processors. The team is composed of managers, staff, and contractors from the Center for Computing Research, the Center for Computer Systems and Technology Integration, and the Information Technology Services Center.

Astra Supercomputer Team representative James Laros Accepts the Defense Programs Award of Excellence

Contact: Laros, James H.
October 2019

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Sandia, PNNL, and Georgia Tech Partner on New AI Co-Design Center

Sandia National Laboratories, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and the Georgia Institute of Technology are launching a research center that combines hardware design and software development to improve artificial intelligence technologies. The Department of Energy Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) will provide $5.5 million over three years for the research effort, called ARtificial Intelligence-focused Architectures and Algorithms (ARIAA). This new collaboration is intended to encourage researchers at the three institutions, each with their own specialty, to simulate and evaluate artificial intelligence hardware when employed on current or future supercomputers. Researchers also should be able to improve AI and machine-learning methods as they replace or augment more traditional computation methods. See this press release for more details.

The Artificial Intelligence-focused Architectures and Algorithms concept has applications, algorithms, programming runtime and architectures all working together

Contact: Rajamanickam, Sivasankaran
October 2019

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CCR Researcher Jay Lofstead Co-Authors Best Paper at HPDC’19

CCR Researcher Jay Lofstead and his co-authors from the Illinois Institute of Technology have been awarded Best Paper at the recent 2019 ACM International Symposium on High- Performance Parallel and Distributed Computing. Their paper entitled “LABIOS: A Distributed Label-Based I/O System” describes an approach to supporting a wide variety of conflicting I/O workloads under a single storage system. The paper introduces a new data representation called a label, which more clearly describes the contents of data and how it should be delivered to and from the underlying storage system. LABIOS is a new class of storage system that uses data labeling and implements a distributed, fully decoupled, and adaptive I/O platform that is intended to grow in the intersection of High-Performance Computing and Big Data. Each year the HPDC Program Chairs select the Best Paper based on reviews and discussion among the members of the Technical Program Committee. The award is named in memory of Karsten Schwan, a professor at Georgia Tech who made significant and lasting contributions to the field of parallel and distributed computing.

Contact: Lofstead, Gerald Fredrick (Jay)
June 2019

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CCR Researcher Ryan Grant Honored by Queen’s University

CCR Researcher Ryan Grant was recently recognized by his alma mater as one of the top 125 engineering alumni or faculty of Queen’s University during a celebration of the 125thanniversary of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science. The award recognizes the achievements of alumni and faculty who are outstanding leaders in their field and represent excellence in engineering. Winners were recognized in March during a ceremony at the university in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Ryan received his Bachelor of Applied Science, Master of Science in Engineering, and Ph.D. in Computer Engineering from Queen’s, and he is a Principal member of technical staff in the Scalable System Software department with expertise in high-performance interconnect technologies.

Contact: Grant, Ryan
June 2019

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Kokkos User Group Meeting

The Kokkos team is announcing the first Kokkos User Group Meeting to be held in Albuquerque New Mexico, USA April 23rd through 25th. The meeting will give the growing Kokkos community a chance to present progress in adopting Kokkos, exchange experiences, discuss challenges and help set priorities for the future roadmap of Kokkos. Projects are invited to give a 20 minute presentation. Application talks are encouraged to focus on technical and algorithmic challenges in adopting Kokkos and how Kokkos’s capabilities were used to overcome those.

For additional information, send email to  or visit:

Contact: Trott, Christian Robert
February 2019

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Warren Davis Earns National Honors in Leadership and Technology

Warren Davis, received his award during the conference in Washington, D.C., Feb. 7-9, 2019. The annual meeting recognizes black scientists and engineers and is a program of the national Career Communications Group, which advocates for corporate diversity.

This scientist wants to help you see like a computer.

If you saw all the aquariums that fill Davis’ home, you might think he was a pet lover. But you’d be wrong.  Davis just has a passion for recreating things.

“I’ve got a sand bed that does denitrification in a certain layer,” mimicking a natural aquatic ecosystem, Davis said. “I’ve got animals that sift the sand bed so it doesn’t become anoxic. I have things that eat uneaten food particles that get trapped under the rocks.” It’s not a perfect model, he said, but it’s close.

Davis is also adept at recreating natural, mechanical processes to solve problems in engineering. In these cases, he takes natural phenomena — like air flowing over a surface or a person taking a step — and uses machine learning to explain them mathematically with an equation, also called a function. Machine learning can approximate complex processes much faster than they can be numerically solved, which saves companies time and resources if, for example, they want to predict how well a proposed aircraft design would hold up in flight. These savings compound when designers want to simulate multiple iterations.

“That’s what I do. I try to learn the functions that we care about,” Davis said.

He also has taken a leadership role helping Sandia and its business partners incorporate machine learning into their own research and development programs. On multiple occasions, he says, this addition has transformed the way they work, making their research more efficient and agile long after his project with them has ended.

The technique sometimes delivers unexpected solutions, too.

“When I’m able to take a data set and come up with something people haven’t seen before or some underlying function it is truly an amazing, almost magical feeling,” he said.

Davis’ work earned him a Research Leadership award.

Sandia news media contact: Troy Rummler,

Paper was published in the Journal of Policy and Complex Systems.  L. W. E. Epifanovskaya, K. Lakkaraju, J. Letchford, M. C. Stites, J. C. Reinhardt, and J. Whetzel. Modeling economic interdependence in deterrence using a serious game. Journal on Policy and Complex Systems, 4(SAND-2018-7419J), 2018.

Sandia National Laboratories’ Warren Davis, an expert in machine learning, has been selected to receive the 2019 Research Leadership Award for being “a consistent leader in discovering, developing and implementing new technologies,” according to the award citation. (Photo by Randy Montoya)

Contact: Oldfield, Ron A.
February 2019

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