Horst Simon, an internationally recognized expert in computer science and applied mathematics, has been named Deputy Director of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab).

“Horst is a strong leader who has helped to lead a tremendously productive program in high performance computing that is world-class,” said Berkeley Lab Director Paul Alivisatos. “As Deputy Director he’ll help me lead major scientific initiatives, oversee strategic research investments, and maintain the intellectual vitality of Berkeley Lab.”

Prior to this appointment, Simon served as Associate Lab Director for Computing Sciences. In his capacity as Associate Lab Director, Simon helped to establish Berkeley Lab as a world leader in providing supercomputing resources to support research in fields ranging from global climate modeling to astrophysics. He is also an adjunct professor in the College of Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. In that role he worked to bring the Lab and the campus closer together, developing a designated graduate emphasis in computational science and engineering. In addition, he has worked with project managers from the Department of Energy, the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense and other agencies, helping researchers define their project requirements and solve technical challenges.

Simon joined Berkeley Lab in early 1996 as director of the newly formed National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), and was one of the key architects in establishing NERSC at its new location at Berkeley Lab. Under his leadership NERSC enabled important discoveries for research across a wide spectrum of scientific disciplines. Simon was also the founding director of Berkeley Lab’s Computational Research Division, which conducts applied research and development in computer science, computational science, and applied mathematics.

Simon’s research interests are in the development of sparse matrix algorithms, algorithms for large-scale eigenvalue problems, and domain decomposition algorithms for unstructured domains for parallel processing. His algorithm research efforts were honored with the 1988 and the 2009 Gordon Bell Prize for parallel processing research. He was also member of the NASA team that developed the NAS Parallel Benchmarks, a widely used standard for evaluating the performance of massively parallel systems. He is co-editor of the biannual TOP500 list that tracks the most powerful supercomputers worldwide, as well as related architecture and technology trends.

He holds an undergraduate degree in mathematics from the Technische Universtät in Berlin, Germany, and a Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of California at Berkeley. Simon succeeds Jay Keasling, who served as interim Deputy Director. Keasling will return to his duties as Chief Executive Officer of the Joint BioEnergy Institute.

As Deputy Director, Simon will receive an annual salary of $335,000. The Deputy Director’s salary, like that of all other UC employees at the laboratory, is paid from funds derived from the federal DOE contract. No general funds from the state are used to pay the Deputy Director’s salary. In accordance with university policy, he is eligible for participation in the UC Mortgage Origination Program. Simon also will receive standard pension and health and welfare benefits and standard senior management benefits, including senior manager life insurance and executive salary continuation for disability.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory provides solutions to the world’s most urgent scientific challenges including clean energy, climate change, human health, and a better understanding of matter and force in the universe. The Lab is a world leader in improving our lives and knowledge of the world around us through innovative science, advanced computing, and technology that makes a difference. Berkeley Lab is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) national laboratory. It conducts unclassified scientific research and is managed by the University of California for the DOE Office of Science. Visit our website.

Additional information

To read a Q & A with Horst Simon, visit
http://www.lbl.gov/Publications/Deputy-Director/about.html

The University of California Board of Regents on Nov. 19 named Paul Alivisatos director of the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, which is managed by the university.

“Paul Alivisatos’ scientific expertise and management experience have earned the respect and confidence of the lab staff, the academic community, the DOE, and other federal and industrial sponsors,” said UC President Mark Yudof. “I am confident that Paul is the right leader for the Berkeley Lab at this pivotal point in its history. Under his leadership, Berkeley Lab will continue to make great contributions in science and to the world around us.”

Acting on the recommendation of Yudof and with the concurrence of the U.S. Department of Energy, the Regents appointed Alivisatos the seventh director of Berkeley Lab. The appointment takes effect immediately. Alivisatos replaces Steven Chu, who was sworn in as U.S. Secretary of Energy in January 2009.

“I’ve known Paul for many years,” said DOE Under Secretary for Science Steven E. Koonin. “He’s a wonderful scientist and has done a fine job as interim director. All of us at DOE look forward to helping him take the lab to new heights.”

The Board of Regents named Alivisatos interim director of Berkeley Lab in January 2009.
Since his appointment, Alivisatos has successfully led the laboratory in obtaining more than $220 million in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. That funding will further the lab’s work in many areas, including computing support to the nation’s scientists, assistance to users of Berkeley Lab’s flagship Advanced Light Source and development of a new laser accelerator. In addition, Alivisatos and his management team are developing a number of new initiatives including a next-generation light source, integrating research on the carbon cycle across the lab, and reinvigorating the lab’s safety culture and its community relations.

“Berkeley Lab is a state, national and global resource with a strong sense of responsibility to the country and a profound sense of urgency to help the Department of Energy fulfill its important missions,” said Alivisatos. “I share these values and concerns and will work with my Berkeley Lab colleagues to ensure that we bring together the sharpest minds to find the best solutions to the energy problems that threaten our planet.”

Prior to this appointment, Alivisatos was the deputy director of Berkeley Lab, serving as the lab's chief research officer and overseeing the discretionary research budget, key research initiatives and technology transfer functions. In addition, he assisted the director in developing the overall strategic direction and institutional planning for the laboratory.

Alivisatos is a leader of Berkeley Lab's Helios solar research initiative, where he is spearheading ground-breaking research on artificial photosynthesis and photovoltaic technology through the creation of nano-inspired devices.

From 2005 to 2007, prior to being named deputy director of the Berkeley Lab, Alivisatos was associate laboratory director for physical sciences.

    From 2002 to 2008 he was director of the materials sciences division and from 2001 to 2005 was director of the Molecular Foundry at the lab. Alivisatos has been a member of the faculty at UC Berkeley since 1988, following the completion of his postdoctoral work at AT&T Bell Laboratories. He is currently the Larry and Diane Bock Professor of Nanotechnology and a professor in the departments of materials science and chemistry.

Alivisatos is a scientific founder of Quantum Dot Corp. and Nanosys Inc., and a board member of Solexant Inc. Alivisatos is the founding editor of Nano Letters, a publication of the American Chemical Society.

Alivisatos has published widely and is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award, the Eni Italgas Prize for Energy and Environment, the Rank Prize for Optoelectronics Award, the Wilson Prize, the Coblentz Award for Advances in Molecular Spectroscopy, and the Department of Energy's (DOE) Awards for Sustained Outstanding Research in Materials Chemistry and Outstanding Scientific Accomplishment in Materials Chemistry. He has held fellowships with the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society, the American Chemical Society and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Alivisatos holds a Ph.D. in chemistry from UC Berkeley and a bachelor of arts in chemistry from the University of Chicago.

UC President Yudof initiated a national search for a permanent Berkeley Lab director in the summer of 2009. Yudof appointed a search committee of Regents and several prominent members of the university, laboratory and scientific community. The search committee was advised by a screening taskforce composed of eminent university and laboratory researchers and administrators. The search committee also received support from the executive search firm of Storbeck/ Pimentel and Associates.

As director of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Alivisatos will earn $417,155 annually, representing a 2.5 percent ($10,175) increase over the current annual salary and a 16.9 percent ($60,155 dollar) increase over his current base salary as laboratory deputy director. Per university policy, he will receive an annual automobile allowance of $8,916. Per policy, Alivisatos is eligible for participation in the UC Mortgage Origination Program. Alivisatos also will receive standard pension and health and welfare benefits and standard senior management benefits, including senior manager life insurance, executive business travel insurance, executive salary continuation for disability, and an administrative fund for official entertainment and other purposes that comply with university policy. As a member of the UC tenured faculty in a senior management position, Alivisatos is eligible to accrue sabbatical credits.

The director's salary, like that of all other UC employees at the laboratory, is paid from funds derived from the federal DOE contract. No general funds from the state are used to pay the director's salary.
The University of California has managed Berkeley Lab since its inception in 1931, when it was one of the first laboratories of its kind showing the extraordinary value of multidisciplinary research, which ultimately led to the creation of the national laboratory system. Founded by Ernest O. Lawrence, who won the Nobel Prize in physics in 1939 for his invention of the cyclotron, Berkeley Lab has evolved into a multidisciplinary research facility advancing the forefront of scientific knowledge and addressing problems of national and global concern.

The DOE's Office of Science is the steward of 10 laboratories in the national laboratory system, including Berkeley Lab.

Today, Berkeley Lab performs research in nanoscience and advanced materials, life sciences, computing, energy and Earth sciences, physics, and cosmology. It also operates a homeland security office dedicated to leveraging fundamental scientific research to develop methods for ensuring the safety of our country. Researchers at the laboratory have won nine Nobel Prizes and 12 National Medals of Science. More than 250 Berkeley Lab faculty and scientists hold joint appointments with UC Berkeley and other UC campuses.

More information regarding the search process for the director of the Berkeley Lab can be found online at: http://www.lbl.gov/director-search/

More information about the University of California can be found online at:
http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/

  • Spectra Logic continues its proven record of success supporting the federal, state and local government agencies, ranking in the Top 10% of Government GSA contractors for the 3rd year in a row. 

  • Exemplifying this success, Spectra’s Federal sales comprised more than 20 percent of overall company revenue in 2009.

Spectra Logic today announced that it ranked in the top ten percent of U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) information technology (IT) Schedule 70 contractors for 2009. This is the third consecutive year Spectra Logic has ranked as a top vendor based on annual revenues of pre-approved GSA Schedule 70 IT products and services purchased by federal, state and local government agencies. Spectra Logic’s Federal sales division has a proven record of success supporting government organizations, and its sales comprise more than 20 percent of overall company revenue.

"Federal, state and local government agencies want backup and archive solutions that can easily handle large, fast-growing data volumes and high data availability, while helping to deliver greener IT environments that use less energy and minimize floor space," said Brian Grainger, vice president of worldwide sales, Spectra Logic. "Spectra Logic’s solutions are ideally suited for the government market – from high density, energy-efficient tape libraries to disk-based deduplication appliances that reduce stored data volumes."

Spectra Logic added several new products and services to the GSA schedule in 2009, including the Spectra T-Finity enterprise tape library, the Spectra T680 mid-range tape library, Spectra’s disk-based nTier Deduplication product line, media, backup application software and TranScale upgrade service options. Spectra Logic’s archive and backup products have been listed on GSA Schedule 70 since 2003 under GSA contract number GS-35F-0563K.

“The high-capacity Spectra T-Finity tape library enables large enterprise-class organizations to protect, archive and quickly access petabytes of classified and unclassified data,” said Mark Weis, director of federal sales, Spectra Logic. “T-Finity’s inclusion on the GSA Schedule 70 simplifies the purchasing process for our federal, state and local government customers.”

GSA establishes long-term government-wide contracts with commercial firms to provide access to more than 11 million commercial products and services that can be ordered directly from GSA Schedule contractors. The Information Technology Schedule 70 (a Multiple Award Schedule) grants agencies direct access to commercial experts who can thoroughly address the needs of the government IT Community through 20 Special Item Numbers (SINS).  These SINs cover the most general purpose commercial IT hardware, software and services.

In addition to GSA, Spectra Logic’s products are also listed on several Government Acquisition Contracts including ITES, NETCENTS and SEWP.

Asthma, Cancer, Weather Disaster-Related Illnesses Cited Among Concerns

The vulnerability of people to the health effects of climate change is the focus of a report released today by an NIH-led federal interagency group that includes NOAA. The report, “A Human Health Perspective on Climate Change,” calls for coordinating federal research to better understand climate’s impact on human health and identifying how these impacts can be most effectively addressed. The report was published by Environmental Health Perspectives and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. 

The report indicates what is known and the significant knowledge gaps in our understanding of the consequences of climate change on 11 major illness categories, including cancer, cardiovascular disease and stroke, asthma and other respiratory disorders, food-borne diseases and nutrition, weather and heat-related fatalities, and water and vector-borne infectious diseases.  

 “To mitigate and adapt to the health effects of climate change, we must first understand them. This report is a vital new roadmap for doing that,” said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “There is an urgent need to get started, and I am pleased that we can bring NOAA climate science and NOAA capabilities in linking ocean and human health and a range of other monitoring and prediction tools to the table.”    

 Health experts from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and NOAA contributed to the new report. Research recommendations include examining how diseases in marine mammals might be linked to human health; investigating how climate change might contaminate seafood, beaches and drinking water; and understanding the impact of atmospheric changes on heat waves and air-borne diseases. There are questions about the effects of increased rainfall and extreme weather events on sewage discharges and run-off and what this will mean to human health. Integrating human, terrestrial and aquatic animal health surveillance with environmental monitoring is recommended to better understand emerging health risks like Lyme disease, West Nile virus, malaria, and toxins from marine algae.  

 To address disaster planning and management, the report encourages research aimed at strengthening healthcare and emergency services, especially when events such as floods, drought and wildfires can affect human health both during and after an event. The report also identifies the need for more effective early warning systems providing, for example, an alert to those with cardiovascular disease on extreme heat days or when air pollution is high. Other issues include susceptible and displaced populations; public health and health care infrastructure; essential capacities and skills, particularly for modeling and prediction; the integration of climate observation networks with health impact and surveillance tools, and communication and education.

NOAA understands and predicts changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and conserves and manages our coastal and marine resources. Visit us at http://www.noaa.gov

 

The 2009 national meeting of the Centre for High Performance Computing (CHPC) combined with the 5th BELIEF (Bringing European eLectronic e-Infrastructures to Expanding Frontiers) Symposium, takes place from 7 to 9 December 2009 at the Sandton Convention Centre. Some 270 local and international delegates have registered for this event.

This year the CHPC and the South African National Research Network (SANReN) have made significant progress in the ongoing efforts to establish and enhance usage of South Africas national cyber infrastructure. The Department of Science and Technology (DST) funds both initiatives, which will soon be complemented by the Very Large Datasets initiative.

The SUN Microsystems hybrid supercomputer at the CHPC has recently made it onto the TOP500 list of supercomputers globally. Launched in September 2009, it is now the fastest supercomputer in Africa. The CHPC boasts significant supercomputing resources for the local and African research communities. Since the launch of its operation, the CHPC has achieved significant milestones, most notably the completion of its first round of flagship projects. Flagship projects are a mechanism to drive pockets of collaborative research requiring significant computational resources on problems of relevance to South Africa and have a strong human capital development.

The DST and SANReN recently announced the completion of the national backbone networking ahead of schedule. The national backbone interconnects the metros of Tshwane, Johannesburg, Mangaung, Cape Town, Nelson Mandela Bay and eThekwini on a 10-gigabits-per-second fibre-optic ring network and supports projects of national importance. The Tertiary Education Network has acquired international bandwidth from Seacom which can now be distributed via the SANReN national backbone network. This development bodes well for South Africas ability to tackle bandwidth-hungry projects such as the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), as well as for collaboration with international partners.

This year the 5th BELIEF symposium has been collocated with the 2009 CHPC national meeting. The CSIR Meraka Institute is part of the BELIEF-II consortium, funded by the Capacities Programme which is part of the European Unions Framework Programme 7. This will allow valuable insights into the trends and visions of the evolving e-Infrastructures ecosystem in South Africa and Europe by providing a co-operation platform to promote knowledge sharing between business, research, government and academic communities.

Speakers at the event have been drawn from the local and international research communities. These include C. Schoultz, Director: Character Matters who will speak on impact of cyber infrastructure on the South African animation industry and J. Jonas, Associate Director: Science & Engineering SKA South Africa, whose topic is entitled Dataflow in Radio Telescopes: the Square Kilometre Array and MeerKAT.

A selection of overseas speakers includes Dr C. McIntyre, Senior Vice President, Strategic Operations and High Performance Computing Initiative, Council for Competitiveness (US); Professor Yannis Ioannidis, Professor at the Department of Informatics and Telecommunications of the University of Athens and Dr Hermann Lederer, Deputy Director of the Garching Computing Centre (RZG) of the Max Planck Society.

Proceedings at the event will be shared with interested parties in Europe via video conferencing.

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