Vice President Gore Announces High Performance Award to University of New Hampshire
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Vice President Al Gore announced today that the National Science Foundation (NSF) will award High Performance Connections grants to the University of New Hampshire and 35 other universities across the nation, bringing the total of such awards to 128.
The universities will receive grants to link into NSF's very high performance Backbone Network Service (vBNS) or other NSF-approved high performance networks, allowing scientists and engineers to collaborate and share powerful computing and information resources. The vBNS is crucial to the President's Next Generation Internet (NGI) and serves as the initial interconnect for Internet2 member institutions.
Begun in 1995, the vBNS is a five-year, $50 million effort of the NSF which is collaborating on the project with MCI Telecommunications Corporation. University connections to the vBNS are evaluated by a peer review process and approved on the basis of scientific and technical merit.
This sophisticated telecommunications network runs at 622 million bits per second and has begun a transition to operation at 2.4 gigabits per second. By comparison, the average home modem operates from 28,800 to 56,600 bits per second. In addition, the vBNS is expected to always be several steps ahead of commercially available networking.
This high capacity network allows scientists and engineers to collect and share vast amounts of data, collaborate better across large distances and run complex equipment remotely. Scientists, for instance, can create 3D models of anything from molecules to machinery on San Diego Supercomputer Center-based equipment; use virtual reality 3D CAVE equipment with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications; share visualizations of the Chesapeake Bay or weather simulations; or search distributed archives of maps, video clips, and photographs.
Of the 36 institutions, 15 are located in EPSCoR states. The Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research includes jurisdictions that have historically received smaller amounts of federal research and development (R&D) funding and have demonstrated a commitment to develop their research bases and improve the quality of science, mathematics and engineering research conducted at their universities and colleges.
Most institutions receive High Performance Connections grants of up to $350,000 over two years to offset the cost of linking from their sites to the vBNS backbone. NSF is spending about $12.25 million over two years for this round of grants. Institutions in EPSCoR states are eligible to receive up to an additional $200,000 to help mitigate extra costs due to their geographic locations.
Universities Receiving Grants for High Performance Connections
University of Kansas
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2016, its budget is $7.5 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 48,000 competitive proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $626 million in professional and service contracts yearly.
Useful NSF Web Sites: