About the Centre of Informatics - Tricity Academic Supercomputer & networK (CI TASK)

Founded in 1994 by the State Committee for Scientific Research (KBN), Centre of Informatics - Tricity Academic Supercomputer & networK (CI TASK) is an inter-university unit that manages one of the biggest and most modern metropolitan area networks (MAN) in Poland.

The TASK network covers the territory of the whole so-called Tri-City, i.e. the complex of three adjacent towns Gdansk-Sopot-Gdynia. It connects 70 LAN networks of various research institutes, in which over 6000 computers of PC class, workstations, and servers are now installed. The network has about 16000 users (without students). Transmission technologies are FDDI and ATM, with transfer rates 100, 155 and 622 Mb/s. The TASK network is connected to the national network with 34/155 Mb/s, thus enabling remote access to the Centre resources, the usage of all networks services, multimedial transmissions, interactive work, teaching and learning via the network. Our Centre co-operates closely with four other supercomputer centres in Poland, and participates in creation of national metacomputing system. We also have a link to the TEN-155 (155 Mb/s) panEuropean research network which provides for extension of the service to the USA and other continents.

In recognition of our achievements in metacomputing technologies based on SGI servers, a special prize has been awarded by the State Committee for Scientific Research in 1999.

Permanently increasing power of installed computers and continuous increase of the access speed creates the possibility to perform extensive computer aided research in almost each field of science and technology. A concise characteristic of the main Centre departments is as follows.

The Network Group serves as the design and supervising center of the whole Tri-City network. Now the network operates in ATM and FDDI technologies. It consists of three FDDI rings, each with five to eight FDDI nodes connected with links operating in ATM technology. The group maintains all the network services and servers, monitors secure network operation, and gathers network statistics, both within TASK, cooperating MANs, and worldwide transmitions. Network supervising is highly automated with such tools as SUN Net Manager, Cisco Works, and Cisco NetFlow Analyzer. Lately, the Network Group offers creation of the Virtual LAN facility. A pilot VLAN configuration has been established for the University of Gdansk.

The Supercomputers Group maintains and manages all the modern computers (IBM, SGI, SUN, clusters) installed in CI TASK equipped with a high-capacity archivisation system (ATL, HP, and EXABYTE). A very rich software installed on computers of our Centre (34 profesional packages) makes it possible to perform large scale calculations in various fields of science and technology. The group also delivers expert advice in software and servers security. Its latest attainment is the SGI cluster project that resulted in effective supercomputer workload.

The Inter-Disciplinary Group of Mathematical Modelling of the Centre of Informatics - Tricity Academic Supercomputer & networK has been established as a group for mathematical modelling of theoretical and applied research. Its main fields of interest include: Quantum Chemistry, Plasma Physics, Atomic Physics, Biomolecular Modelling, Mechanics, Medicine, and Electrodynamics. The Group publishes papers of its interests in the TASK Quarterly Scientific Bulletin. The established journal provides a common platform for the presentation of papers and exchange of views on numerical methods in their applications to solve a variety of problems in science and engineering with the aid of high performance computers. Contributors can send proposals to quarterly@task.gda.pl.