ARCHER is the latest UK National Supercomputing Service, started in November 2013, in collaboration with EPSRC, NERC, EPCC, Cray Inc. and The University of Edinburgh. ARCHER provides a capability resource to allow researchers to run simulations and calculations that require large numbers of processing cores working in a tightly-coupled, parallel fashion.
The annual Image and Video Competition is an event for all users of ARCHER to share their images or videos of “ARCHER Enabling Research.” Ben’s entry entitled “Seismic Waves in the Ocean” beat competition from 30 other entrants to be the Overall Winner. The prize of £250 will be shared between Ben and Postdoctoral Research Assistant in Geophysics, Kuangdai Leng who collaborated in creation of the video, which you can see below:
Seismology – the study of earthquakes and the ground-shaking waves they produce – allows us to explore the interior of our planet, revealing details of its structure and behaviour which are otherwise hidden. One challenge, however, is understanding how the oceans affect the seismic waves which we observe and measure. To investigate this effect, we build computer models of what we think the vibrations produced by a given earthquake should look like. This video shows such a prediction, from an earthquake in New Guinea. This is the first global-scale seismic simulation with a realistic ocean that we are aware of, and hence it represents an important step forward in seismic modelling. We record the predicted wave energies on the seafloor, revealing a detailed and complex pattern which we can then compare to observations to learn more about the Earth’s interior structure and the processes at work deep beneath the ground.