Visualizing Success: SBIRs Move Software into the Field
Intelligent Light is using SBIR grants to tap the
power of VisIt, a visualization program supported in
part by the Advanced Scientific Computing Research (ASCR) program in the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science.
Intelligent Light was selected as a trusted vendor who could provide the expertise and discipline to tailor tools to industrial workflows while commercializing and hardening the government developed code. Intelligent Light is providing industrial grade software development, engineering service and customer support to end users.
The project enables Intelligent Light to hold down development cost and end-user investments by utilizing open source code developed by DOE. Moreover, the project is helping Intelligent Light customers move to in-situ post-processing years earlier than if IL had developed all of the required technology from scratch.
Eric Brugger and other Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists designed VisIt to visualize the mounds of simulation data DOE supercomputers generate. It’s built to scale well and it’s well suited for in situ processing.
“VisIt … is an open-source code, free to download and modify, as thousands of researchers have. With no licensing fees, merging VisIt into FieldView will hold
down costs for small- and medium-sized companies using it on HPC systems.”
Intelligent Light responded to a call by ASCR to harden and commercialize DOE-supported software for high performance computing applications, making the tools robust and accessible. Working under a Phase II grant of nearly $1 million, Intelligent light is integrating VisIt into our FieldView HPC suite. The funding is from a U.S. Small Business
Innovation Research (SBIR) program, which provides capital for early research and development with commercial potential.
VisIt’s big-data capacity allows FieldView to handle a wider range of CFD visualization tasks. “But ‘if you want to turn it into a commercial product, you really have to spend the time to customize things to people’s workflows,’ Brugger says. ‘We’ve customized it to our workflows in the DOE community,’ but it doesn’t always fit other users workflows.”
ASCR recognized it needs help to move VisIt and other DOE-supported solutions for high-performance computing into commercial use. Through the SBIR program, it called
for small businesses able to take DOE codes and “shrink wrap” them into accessible tools.
The collaboration “shows DOE is taking its research and development and spawning new technology – which is one of our missions,” says Benjamin Grover, division leader for
Applications, Simulations, and Quality at Livermore.
With a Phase II grant of nearly $1 million, Intelligent Light is integrating VisIt into its FieldView HPC suite. Later this year, customers will be able to choose either the standard FieldView code or VisIt to visualize CFD data.