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Petascale Synthetic Visual Cognition at LANL LDRD Day 2010
(Sep 2010)

Albuquerque Journal coverage

PetaVision Team wins LANL Distinguished Performance Award
(Nov 2009)

PetaVision is a functional model of the visual cortex that enables petascale simulation of mammalian vision. The PetaVision Team implemented its massively parallel simulation on the Roadrunner supercomputer and, in the process, set a world speed record for scientific computation—1.144 petaflops. The team created a completely new methodology for neural computation. Members defined a set of computational primitives for integrate-and-fire neurons, then developed a novel software architecture to emulate cortical columns in hardware. The resulting billion-neuron simulation was run in Poughkeepsie, New York, where Roadrunner was still being tested by IBM. The simulation was the first of its kind in the world and the first scientific calculation to break the petaflop barrier. Widely reported in the media, the PetaVision Team’s success has had tremendous impact on the emerging field of synthetic cognition and nonconventional high-performance computing in general. It allows Los Alamos to lead in the important new area of large-scale neural computing, which has enormous potential for programmatic growth.

World-record Supercomputer Mimics Human Sight Brain Mechanisms
(June 15, 2008)

Roadrunner supercomputer puts research at a new scale
(June 12, 2008)