Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                         CONTACT:
June 18, 1997                                    Michael Schneider
                                                 Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center

Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center Wins Computerworld Smithsonian Award

PITTSBURGH -- For developing a storm forecasting system that can save billions of dollars and many lives, the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center and the Center for Analysis and Predict ion of Storms won the 1997 Computerworld Smithsonian Award in Science. The award, which recognizes uses of information technology that improve the quality of life, was presented at a June 9 ceremony in Washington, D.C.

For the past four years, during spring storm season in Oklahoma, researchers at CAPS used computing resources at PSC to test their innovative system, the Advanced Regional Prediction System (ARPS). Whi le current methods give about 30 minutes warning, with fairly imprecise information about extent and severity, 1996 tests at PSC successfully predicted storms seven hours in advance with a high degree of accuracy, showing that ARPS can dramatically improv e timeliness and accuracy of severe storm forecasting.

Due to the nature of storm forecasting, with weather evolving rapidly, ARPS requires the most advanced scientific computing systems available. CAPS' goal is to develop ARPS and turn it over to the National Weather Service for nationwide implementation early next century.

This is the second major 1997 award recognizing this research. CAPS also won the 1997 Discover Magazine Award for Technological Innovation in Computer Software. This is the fifth year in a row that Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center has been recognized either as a finalist or winner in the CWSA science award.

More information, including graphics, about this research is available on World Wide Web:


The Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center, a joint effort of Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh together with Westinghouse Electric Corp., was established in 1986, with support from the National Science Foundation, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other funding sources .

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