House raises Energy computing funds

Department of Energy

The House's version of the Energy Department's spending bill provides a sizable increase in funding for computing initiatives.

The fiscal 2004 Energy and Water appropriations bill would allocate $203.5 million for Energy's Advanced Scientific Computing program, which would be $30 million more than the Bush administration requested.

House members this week overwhelmingly approved the spending bill with a 387 to 36 vote, with 11 representatives not voting. Energy's science programs received $3.45 billion in spending, an increase of $140 million over the budget request. The amount is also $156 million above the fiscal 2003 level.

The Advanced Scientific Computing Research program, directed by Energy's Office of Science, allows researchers to perform scientific computations and simulations on high-performance computers. These computers can process, store, manage and analyze massive amounts of data.

The initiative also pays for research in networking techniques to link supercomputers and experimental facilities with scientists using the data.

Office of Science officials recently released their 20-year plan to develop and upgrade scientific research facilities. Top priorities include UltraScale Scientific Computing Capability, which would increase computing power for scientific research by a factor of 100.

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