The methods and algorithms that have been developed by computational scientists are of great benefit to the pharmaceutical industry in developing new drugs (by simulating complex molecules and chemical reactions) and also in the energy sector in producing efficient solar cells. They help economists to understand the markets and assess the scale of economic crises.

Climate researchers use HPC in their climate forecasts, and MeteoSwiss works out its daily weather forecasts on CSCS computers.


MeteoSwiss works out its daily weather forecasts on CSCS computers. Weather forecasts not only tell the man in the street about the weather and possible natural hazards, but they also provide essential information for air traffic control services and also disaster mitigation (for example, if there is a radioactive leak at a nuclear power station and people need to assess how far the radioactive cloud will spread).

The two Cray CS-Storm cabinets for MeteoSwiss numerical weather predictions are named “Kesch” and “Es-cha” which are the names in German (Piz Kesch) and in Rumanch (Piz d’Es-cha) of a peak in the Albula Alps of the Rhaetian Alps in Switzerland. At 3’418 metres, it is the highest peak in the Albula Alps, Grisons.

The two new cabinets at CSCS are tightly packed. Each of  them consists of 12 hybrid computing nodes for a total of 96 graphic cards or 192 graphic processors (GPUs) and 24 conventional CPUs.