Project Start Date

01st Jun 2006

Met Éireann

Enabling Ireland's Weather Forecast with HPC

For almost a decade, ICHEC has been successfully working with Met Éireann to provide HPC facility for the national meteorological service’s computer models enabling Met Éireann to build forecasts for the coming hours and days.

Relying in reliability

“Keeping Ireland informed about the weather is a 24/7 business,” explains Eoin Moran, Met Éireann’s Director, and ICHEC are up to speed. “Met Éireann run their models around the clock and it has to be reliable, so you can’t a ord to have things breaking down on a Friday and not running over the weekend,” he says. “It has happened that to keep things running, ICHEC sta have needed to get out of bed on Christmas morning to x a problem.”

ICHEC’s excellent technical ability in high-end computing and modelling make them perfect partners for developing research collaborations in conjunction with international consortia, notes Met Éireann’s Director. 

Smarter, faster, more powerful 

The simulation ‘crunching’ that underpins weather forecasting needs both smart model design and serious computer power - and the technology develops quickly, explains Alastair McKinstry, ICHEC Environmental Sciences Activity Leader. As well as enabling more powerful HPC facility, ICHEC also clues in manufacturers of computers about what the eld of meteorology needs. Examples include the HPE/SGI Centre of Excellence on Climate Modelling co-located with ICHEC, and ICHEC’s work with the European H2020 ESCAPE project on the suitability of novel technologies from Intel and NVIDIA for climate and forecasting codes.

We have collaborations with companies who want to build the next generation of chips,” explains McKinstry. “Companies need to know what people will need from their supercomputers, and we are in a position to tell them what those needs are.” 

"We didn't have the computer resources and we find it very convenient to deal with ICHEC. We were impressed with the level of service that we got that it led to use the resources for our operational forecasts." - Mr. Ray McGrath - Head of Research and Applications Division.

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